My Blog

My First Love

I was but four years old, the very first time I had fallen in love if one could call it that. This girl had the biggest impact on my life, more than probably anyone else with whom I crossed paths, aside from Jesus Christ.

Only those very close to me know this fact and many others assume, that my first love was a girl two years my junior whom I met in September of 1994 and lived up the street from me. I was with her from ages seven to nine.

The reality is, I met my first love some time early in 1991.

It was while attending a church nursery and/or preschool in the railroad town of Schriever, Louisiana.

This was a very rough time in my life, but this girl was so sweet to me, that I couldn’t help but fall for her, even though I was so young.

The reason why my life was rough at this time is that my brother and sister were infants and my parents didn’t have much time for me. I guess I took this hard because before this I was an only child. The other reason is that someone tied to my family was frequently beating the living daylights out of me. I have since forgiven him for beating me and am only bringing it up in this piece because it contributed to this traumatic part of my childhood. I was also special needs but no one at the time realized it.

I was sent to this church every Monday and Tuesday so I could interact with children around my age. To tell the truth, I hated going there, even though it was the only place I saw her.

She and I were always the first two children to arrive in the morning, so that is how we grew “close.”

There was also something about her, even though she was maybe only a little older than me, that she could tell when I was in distress and always had a way of comforting me.

There was even a time I happened to see the man who was beating me while being driven to that preschool and had my first of many panic attacks as a result.

When I arrived, Kristen saw that I was upset and somehow, she managed to calm me down.

There were numerous other times as well when she comforted me, though the only phrase I ever remember her saying is “Don’t worry.”

I ended up falling for her because of her kind heart, but also I thought she was beautiful.

She had porcelain skin, brown eyes, and light brown hair.

She frequently wore either blue and pink dresses. I don’t think I ever remember seeing her wear pants or shorts, which makes me wonder if she was raised in the United Pentecostal Church International or a fragmented church with similar doctrine. This church, by the way, was not UPCI or a non-denominational/fragmented church. Some of those churches strictly enforce dress codes, especially for women and girls, and also frequently teach their members to be reclusive from society and could be the reason why I have not seen her again.

Then in July of 1991, I would be taken out of the church preschool. Unfortunately, I would attend a far worse place for the next nearly ten years.

I remember the day I left very well. She crawled up to hug me goodbye, but I turned her down for fear of being teased.

That probably hurt her feelings immensely and I still regret it almost 30 years later at the time of writing this.

This was one of the worst mistakes of my life and if I had my life to live over, I would somehow have found a way to stay in touch with her, knowing what I know now.

To my knowledge, I’ve never seen her again.

The one time I think I might have seen her was on Easter Sunday, April 11, 2004, at the Wal-Mart in Thibodaux, Louisiana, but this is strictly speculation.

Since 2001, I’ve been trying to locate her and over the years I have asked hundreds if not thousands of women and girls with her first name if they were indeed her. None of them have ever told me “yes.” Many of them never replied, to begin with. Unfortunately a few have blocked me, for nothing more than asking an honest and harmless question. I feel as if people have become extremely block happy in recent years.

In 2004 and 2005, I went back to that church to look for her and did come across a couple of classmates since then but none of them remember her. Pay close attention to that fact!

Because her first name is Kristen, that means there are numerous methods to spell it and I am nowhere near sure of the exact spelling. This on top of not knowing her middle or last name nor even what year she was born in has made locating her all the more difficult.

This is the first time I am 100% public about this very personal story in my life, previously, I’ve only told people whom I deeply trust and I’ve gotten mixed reactions ranging from them thinking I am delusional to them thinking that she and I are indeed meant to be and to not give up on finding her one day.

While I was going through a divorce, I had renewed efforts in trying to locate her.

My main fear is that with me going public with this personal story, there will be some imposters that show up, which is why I have left out the details of exactly which church in Schriever, Louisiana, I met her at or the names of the teachers and other classmates, all of which I vividly remember.

I’ve come across several other classmates from that preschool and nursery, over the years, but the most shocking thing is none of them remember her at all.

I know some would maybe think that she was an angel that only I or maybe a few others could see.

The only reason why I wonder whether or not she’s an angelic being that only I could see is that I remember the teacher saying her name.

BOMBSHELL: She is the truest reason why I decided to start writing back on April 10, 2003. I used my memories of Kristen for most of my inspiration in my early days of writing.

There had been other women and girls who had inspired me to create characters and there had been some young ladies who reminded me of characters I created.

Unfortunately, I got into a relationship with a young woman which resulted in marriage and then ultimately divorce. The relationship lasted from 2007 to 2018.

Around 2014, I started searching for Kristen again, but to no avail. In that year, I also started writing stories again with her as my inspiration. Several of them are up on my blog.

In the latter parts of 2018, I stopped searching altogether, because I had entered into a very loving and stable relationship with a young lady that looked like a younger yet grown-up version of Kristen. Also, I took the fact that she was born in 1991 as a sign that she was the one. Unfortunately, on December 4/5, 2019, she called it quits on me. I was crushed but am finally starting to heal from it. I had gotten into a few brief relationships since but I always ended them for one reason or another.

A certain part of me wants to find her and find out whatever happened to her. Then my delusional self would either try to get to know her and maybe we could fall in love again or at least find out where she is now and let her know the impact she had on my life because it is a tremendous one, then wish her the best. I’ve also come to terms that she could be deceased and if that is the case, I want to visit her burial site and pay great homage and reverence to her. If she is still alive, romantically available and we meet again and get to know each other, physical features such as her size or facial beauty will not matter to me. Almost everyone who knows me knows that I am only attracted to plus-sized and/or super-sized women with pretty faces, but for her, I would try to pursue her no matter what she looked like. Also, nothing in her past would matter to me either, I would take her for who she is because I would remember how kind to me she was back then. For her, I could relax just about all of my standards. I do realize though that this is just a fantasy and that I need to move on.

Since 2014, I have been mentally creating stories of her and I together again after she helps me make a daring escape from some terrible people that had me captive. Because 2021 is the thirtieth anniversary of her and I meet, I may write down some of these stories. By the way, in my mind, they always took place in the year 2021! Possibly stay tuned. There is only one I wrote and did so in February of 2018.

Just for the record, I no longer think she and I are meant to be. The Lord has been showing me what my future spouse will be like and, she is similar in some ways but younger and nowhere near as maternal (for lack of a better word) towards me, though still very loving and affectionate. Also, with me being the male sex, God expects me to do [most of] the protecting and comforting not the other way around, so this is probably the main reason why he hasn’t allowed me to find her, assuming she is not an angel. At the risk of sounding unpopular, God indeed has established certain gender roles! Don’t shoot the messenger…

That’s all I have, for now, thank you for taking the time to read.

Back to “Personal Reflections”

A Stormy Louisiana Monday

The alarm clock rings. A forty-five-year-old gentleman slowly wakes up.

He kisses his thirty-nine-year-old disabled wife good morning then gets ready for the day.

He brews some Community Breakfast Blend Coffee and drinks it mixed with half milk and half cream.

He also fries four eggs sunny side up and also toasts two slices of Evangeline Maid Wite Bread on his natural gas-powered range.

He slides his four eggs onto a plate and spreads some Clover Valley Strawberry Preserves on his two slices of toast.

Finally, he pours a tall glass of V8 juice and, says Grace sits down for breakfast.

He enjoys his breakfast then goes into the bathroom and freshens up in his washbasin, scrubbing his body with a bar of Dial soap.

He then shaves his face and splashes on some Aqua Velva.

Finally, he puts on RightGuard deodorant then gets dressed.

He dons a white Hane’s tee shirt with a left breast pocket, some Navy Blue Dickie’s work pants, a brown Dickie’s leather belt some white Fruit of the Loom crew socks and some brown Brahma work boots.

From his bedroom night table, he retrieves a SwissGear RFID shielded wallet, which he places in his left-back pants pocket, a Leatherman Surge multi-tool which he places in his right pocket and a Streamlight SL-20 LED flashlight which he secures in its belt holster. And he takes his Motorola smartphone secured in an Otterbox and places it in his left pants pocket. He places a bag of Clover Valley Cherry Sours in his breast pocket.

His wife prepares him two Creole tomato sandwiches with Rouse’s Mayonaise and Mustard and black pepper, then a Yeti Mug filled with Black Cherry Kool-Aid and places them in his Igloo Playmate Cooler and hands it to him.

They share a sweet hug and kiss, then she smacks his backside.

She then gets their young daughter ready for school.

Finally, he gets his keys and leaves his house, locking the doors behind him.

The skies are overcast and the wind is blowing as he steps onto his carport and opens the door to his 1993 Dodge Dakota.

He sits down cranks his engine and heads to work.

During his commute, he tunes in the Weather Band on his Midland CB Radio. He learns that the entire listening area is under a Tornado Watch and that a squall line is also due for their area this day.

He cusses under his breath, then asks God for forgiveness and places a couple of Cherry Sours in his mouth. Subsequently, he petitions God to protect his wife and daughter in addition to himself.

The sky is dark as he arrives at the local elementary school where he is employed as the facility engineer.

A bolt of lightning lights up the sky as he walks into the office.

He punches in and listens briefly as the principal’s radio is tuned to the local NPR affiliate.

He then walks to the boiler room and checks his work email on his Motorola Smartphone.

The cooler in the cafeteria needs to be tended to, so he retrieves his required tools and walks over.

There is a smell of bread rolls baking as well as red beans and rice along with smoked sausage being cooked. The aroma is very satisfying.

As the cafeteria staff continues to prepare the students’ lunch, the gentleman services the cooler. In due time he has the compressor pumping again.

One of the cooks attempts to flirt with him, but he replies, “Back off; I love my wife!”

The cafeteria manager warns her to respect his wishes and that he is a good man but a married man and not to mess with him again.

The buses are now dropping off the children.

He sees his young daughter stepping off the bus. She runs up to him and hugs him. He kisses her forehead then escorts her to her classroom.

He checks his work emails again and sees that the new light fixtures for the administration building have arrived and how he is assigned to install them.

He goes to the boiler room and secures a hand truck then walks to the receiving area to pick up the new light fixtures. He loads the boxes on the hand truck then transports them to the administration building along with his tools.

He steps into the administration building just as it begins to pour down rain.

NPR is still playing on the principal’s radio.

Morning Edition is interrupted with a Tornado Warning.

Immediately he assists the faculty and administration round up the children into the halls.

Just as the last student is in the hall, the electricity goes out.

He turns on his Streamlight SL-20 LED and lights up the dark school.

His daughter has an Olight I3E EOS on her lanyard next to her school ID. She also lights up her immediate area.

He stands next to her and begins to attempt to comfort the other students by telling them stories.

Suddenly his phone rings. It is his wife calling.

“I have to take this call,” He says, then quickly answers the phone.

On the other end, she frantically says, “It’s dark as night here bae. I think there’s a tornado nearby. Are you all right?”

“Yes. I am fine. I’m with all the students and my coworkers in the hall.”

“Is our little girl okay?”

“Yes. She has that little flashlight I bought her a while back on her lanyard and she is lighting up the hallways just like me.”

“That’s our girl! We’re blessed with a wonderful child!”

“Like mother, like daughter!”

“You’re so sweet!”

“Now baby, I’m not sure where the tornado is, but please go in the bathtub and cover yourself with a thick blanket!”

“Okay, I will. Do I have to let you go?”

“No. Stay on the line with me, at least until the warning expires. But if the call drops, just know that I love you.”

“I love you too and I won’t be at ease until you and our daughter are home and safe in my arms!”

“I love you, Mommy!” Their little girl called out.

Suddenly a horrible roaring sound was heard…

Back to “Works of Fiction”

The Personal Crisis I Face whilst Listening to NPR

A recent personal conflict of mine is whether I should listen to NPR (National Public Radio) or not.

The local NPR stations that are available in my area are WWNO on 89.9 FM from The University of New Orleans and KTLN, its translator station on 90.5 FM which serves the Houma-Thibodaux Metro.

I do enjoy listening to that radio network because I find doing so enhances my vocabulary, therefore my writing. And not only that, I find it makes me more informed as an individual. It was through listening to NPR that I first discovered the Coronavirus back in January of 2020. I appreciate their science programs and some of their cultural programs as well.

Since my early thirties, I’ve also tried to be more civic-minded and involved in my community at all levels. NPR allows me to do this, at least at varying degrees.

NPR is very educational, entertaining, and informative. And best of all it is free. At the most, I have to pay for the radio receiver and the source of power. So it’s not free, but it is very cheap as opposed to other mediums of information and entertainment.

So, yes, listening to NPR does bring me a considerable deal of happiness and benefits.

…BUT…

I find some of their news reporting leads a little more to the left than they should. After all, NPR is supposed to serve the entire American public, not just certain factions.

Don’t get me wrong, throughout my thirty-four years on this planet (at the time I am writing this), I have been scattered across the political spectrum. Since the ages of thirty-two or thirty-three, though I would consider myself fiercely Moderate. All I’m going to say is that it was a combination of having disabilities, one of my romantic relationships, and just my strong sense of community in general that has made me more Moderate than I used to be. I espouse some Conservative values and I espouse some Liberal values as well. But there are a few Conservative values I eschew, likewise, there are some Liberal values I equally eschew. As I’ve stated before, I know, as a Christian that we live in a flawed, fallen, and imperfect world. There is no getting around it and there are certain judgments that God has placed in this world and humanity. What I have noticed in recent years is that Liberals try to completely remove God’s judgments while Conservatives try to exacerbate God’s judgments. Both of these tactics would be considered playing God in my book and they are both going to have to answer to Him for it.

Okay, so I think I have established my position on my Moderate political stance.

I’m not trying to just attack Liberals in this piece, but I will point out that NPR tends to be more Liberal than Conservative, especially in recent years. Ideally, NPR should not be Conservative, Moderate, or Liberal. NPR should be apolitical, especially because it is meant to serve all of America.

I find the said radio network was especially harsh on the recent Trump administration.

On a Wednesday evening in late January or early February 2020, I had finished listening to NPR for a sizeable portion of the day. They were consistently badmouthing the president at the time.

So, I walked to my church and was waiting for everyone else to arrive so we could have our Prayer Meeting and Bible Study.

At the time I was EDCing a compact Bible and its translation was The Christian Standard Bible.

I was reading that Bible and came across Proverbs Chapter 31 Verse 3, “Don’t spend your energy on women or your efforts on those who destroy kings.”

Immediately I felt the strong Conviction of The Holy Ghost come upon me for listening to NPR earlier that day.

Like most of the American media, NPR had an agenda to destroy the Trump administration.

Now when that scripture was written, the only types of heads of state were kings. Donald Trump was certainly not a king, but I can safely say that the Bible does not endorse destroying any other sort of world leader, no matter how unpopular. The 13th Chapter of Romans will back this belief of mine up, by the way.

Thus began my crisis over whether or not I should listen to NPR.

I know I am a Moderate and a Christian and most American Christians tend to be staunchly pro-Conservative and equally anti Liberal.

I think this is because conservatives tend to be more espoused to Biblical principles, protect religious freedom and they are also mostly Christian, whereas Liberals tend to be more humanist, are not in favor of all religious freedoms and some have been known to persecute Christians in diverse ways.

I’ve mentioned previously in lesser detail how a goal/fantasy of mine is to be married to a super-sized lady and living in a neighborhood that is gentrifying. We would spend our days reading or writing and listening to NPR, to be more informed and to provoke more creativity. Likely we would have a daughter who sings in the school choir. And we would be a civic-minded family in general. I still think of this as a goal and fantasy, but I’m more hesitant about it after I received Divine Conviction about listening to NPR. Also, I am quite single at the moment, but I would still definitely want to be married to a super-sized lady and eventually have children with her. God has shown me very certain attributes about my future spouse, by the way, and I know I just need to wait on Him to bring her into my life.

I’ve seen media sway the political minds of other family members of mine, on both sides of the spectrum.

NPR could even sway my mind if I still listened to it as much as I have in the past.

As a Christian, the only Liberal policies I can truly get behind are those that are meant to protect the vulnerable amongst us, but doing so without a hidden agenda!

By the way, I think I discovered NPR sometime in 2005 and I had listened to it at length for the first time in December of 2005. I had a pocket-sized radio and was sitting on the outside balcony of a public library. It was late afternoon and the skies were overcast. Still, the atmosphere was enough to be tremendously inspiring. And at the time I was on medication that crippled most of my emotions, yet I was still inspired. I don’t remember any of the content of what I had heard that day, but it was still powerful enough to lift my mood and make me more lively, despite all these artificial chemical restraints! I’m not sure what made me stop listening to NPR, but I wouldn’t listen to it again until the Summer of 2017 while doing laundry in the afternoon. During that Summer, I would frequently listen to NPR while sitting on the back porch of a friend. My then-wife-now-ex-wife would be inside watching television. It was a peaceful time in my otherwise stressful marriage. Usually, I would listen to the afternoon program, “All Things Considered.” By the way, she would get angry if I tried to listen to it on my car radio while she was riding with me. I would listen to NPR on the regular whenever I could. In May of 2018, I moved into my current residence, but it is difficult to catch my local NPR station because a nearby FM transmitter bleeds all over most of my radio dials. And even if I could catch it, this constant talk about Coronavirus and other unpleasant issues these days makes it very depressing and hard to listen to. It’s not like it was in 2017 and before!

All in all, I wish I could get in touch with someone who influenced NPR and tells him or her that maybe they would have more listeners if they tried to serve the entire American public instead of just pandering to liberals like the rest of the mainstream media. NPR is supposed to be of a higher caliber than that and therefore should at least try to do better. Imagine if they fairly and accurately reported the news and still did their educational pieces how much listenership they could gain! I won’t hold my breath though. It took Divine Conviction from The Holy Ghost to call me out on listening to NPR and therefore it will take Divine Intervention on a massive scale to make NPR better for everyone.

Until then I wish there was a comparable broadcasting service that was available on the scale that NPR is and truly served all of its listeners.

I guess this, therefore, concludes my piece on the crisis I face for listening to NPR.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed, entertained, and maybe even enlightened.

May God richly bless you!

Back to “Personal Reflections”

A Review of the Sylvania Bluetooth CD Boombox

Just for the record, I do not own the featured image on this page, nor is it the actual image of the product I am reviewing in this piece, but it is close enough and it is related.

I was born in the late 1980s and was a child throughout the 1990s.

Therefore, like most people born during this era, I have an appreciation for the boom box.

As I’ve mentioned before, whilst I was married, my then-wife, now ex-wife, and I would frequently do laundry at the house of her ex-brother-in-law.

We would then cook and run errands for him, in exchange for using his washer and dryer.

His deceased daughter (actually the aspiring writer whose death compelled me to launch this blog), had purchased a Sylvania Boombox from the Ruble, I mean, the Dollar General sometime before being killed in a traffic accident. After her passing, her dad (my ex-wife’s ex-brother-in-law) kept that boom box on his back porch and frequently listened to Classic Rock stations with it.

I would use it to listen to NPR while doing laundry. My then-wife would watch television with her nephews.

I was surprised by the tuning accuracy, especially on FM, despite using the power cord as an antenna and having a fairly simple rotary tuner.

It wasn’t long before I wanted one.

In the late Summer of 2017, I drove to the local Dollar General to purchase one for myself. Of course, there were none in stock so I probably made my frequent remark on how it isn’t the Dollar General but rather the Ruble General. Subsequently, I ended up buying one on eBay.

The one I purchased on eBay didn’t perform as well, so I ended up donating it to charity.

In January of 2018, I left my wife, after years of a tense and faulty marriage, and in May of 2018, I moved into my own apartment after spending the prior three months with an older friend.

From this nicer Dollar General, I purchased a television antenna, a portable fan, and a new Sylvania Boom Box, which is the one shown in the featured image but not the actual model that this piece will be a review thereof.

This model could filter out the interference from a nearby FM transmitter despite having a seemingly simple rotary tuning system.

I used it for about a year, then gave it to a neighbor.

In March of 2021, as I had planned, I purchased the updated version which features Bluetooth.

The model number is a Sylvania SRCD202DG-BT-EO and this will be the product reviewed in this piece.

I have yet to use the CD player feature because CD’s have become mostly obsolete.

I haven’t tried the AM radio feature either, because I have other radios for AM listening.

I tried the FM feature because I was hoping that it could filter out the nearby transmitter like its predecessor models. It does to a degree, but the power cord doubles as the FM antenna and it needs to be in a certain position to catch the NPR station I want.

Unless I was anticipating a hurricane or other disaster that results in an extended power failure I wouldn’t like to purchase the 6 C batteries needed to power this off the grid.

If I had a device that didn’t feature Bluetooth, there is an auxiliary in jack that allows this to be used as a set of speakers.

The speakers put out decent audio, but nothing like a more powerful stereo system.

The Bluetooth feature is where this is a winner.

I have downloaded some scanner and radio apps for my tablet and I pair it with his device.

With this setup, I can hear scanner feeds and radio broadcasts both locally and around the world.

And, yes, NPR is among those feeds.

So is the BBC World Service.

So are some interesting railroad and marine scanner feeds.

As a Christian I know I must needs be careful whilst listening to NPR.

Like one of my recent characters, I listen to NPR mostly because doing so enhances my vocabulary. I don’t particularly care for their biased reporting and I find it is getting worse since I began listening in the Summer of 2017. Case in point, as I’ve mentioned before, it was after hours of listening to NPR for the first time that I began referring to the Dollar General as the Ruble General. Some of the content on there does indeed enrich my mind.

I used to romanticize finding a better woman than my ex-wife and she and I moving into the neighborhood where I used to do laundry, then she and I would sit at home and listen to NPR. We would later have a daughter who would sing in the school choir. This dream almost came true when I met my ex-girlfriend but sunk after she called it quits on me a year and some months later.

There is still something I romanticize about sitting on a back porch in the later afternoon and listening to NPR, but the biased reporting is getting to be too much for it to be enjoyable. NPR is supposed to serve the entire American public, not just certain political factions. I would consider myself politically moderate and so was NPR at the time I began listening. But now, I find, it is leaning way towards the left and that isn’t fair.

All right, let me get off of my soapbox because I doubt it does any good.

My one complaint about this boombox is that the FM reception could be a little better, but at least it appears to have an AFC circuit, though not as well-performing as its predecessor models.

I keep it in my living room on a shelf next to a vintage scanner, a Realistic Pro 2022. That scanner may be slow, but it has the best audio quality I’ve ever seen in a scanner.

The feature I use most is Bluetooth, which provides significantly better audio quality when streaming on my tablet.

I would give this a 4.6 out of 5-star rating because I wish the FM reception was a little better and I wish the speakers could be a little louder.

This particular model is sold only at The Ruble, I mean, The Dollar General for $26+taxes. Considering the build quality and all that it does, I would say it is a fair price, provided one is actually in stock. Some Dollar Generals are notorious for product shortages, long lines in checkout, and cluttered aisles, hence me calling it Ruble General, to begin with. For those who don’t know, the Ruble was the official currency of The Soviet Union and I’ve heard countless reports of the shopping experiences there similar to what I’ve seen in some Dollar Generals, hence me coming up with that idea.

All in all, I guess this, therefore, concludes my review on the Sylvania Bluetooth CD Boombox.

I hope that you, the reader, have been informed and entertained.

May God richly bless you!

Back to “Product Reviews”

Zachary and Tiffany’s First Evening Together-The New Generation Gap

Zachary opened his front door for Tiffany and said, “Here it is. Not much, but for now, it’s mine.”

“It’s cute,” Tiffany replied.

“Thanks.”

Suddenly a rush of anxiety came over Tiffany as she said, shaking, “What am I going to do about clothing and my personal items?”

“When was the last time you bathed?”

“Right before going to the mall.” She paused, then continued, “But I am all sweaty and have no change of clothes.”

“Why don’t you take a bath, wear one of my tee shirts and sweat pants, then I’ll wash your clothes with mine in the laundromat? Then, when I get paid Friday, I know of a thrift store a few towns over that sells articles of clothing for twenty-five cents apiece.”

“What about my undergarments? I know thrift stores don’t sell those.”

I will buy you whichever ones you like.”

“But you’re on a fixed income.”

“Yes, but this is an emergency and I happen to have just enough money left over.”

“Thanks. You’re really sweet, Zack.”

“It’s the least I could do.”

“And you would wash my clothes for me?”

“Sure, I need to do a load of laundry anyway,” Zachary said as he retrieved a black tee-shirt and a pair of grey sweat pants from his dresser, then continued, “Go bathe and change in my bathroom, then afterward, place your dirty laundry in my hamper. It’s in my bedroom closet.”

Tiffany nodded then walked to Zachary’s bathroom.

Zachary stood in his kitchen and listened to the radio as he began to prepare dinner.

Tiffany removed her pink tee-shirt, then her purple brassiere as she stared at herself in the mirror. She then removed her grey tennis shoes, yellow socks, dark blue jeans, and white panty. She then used the toilet and subsequently flushed. Afterwards, she drew water in the bathtub and quickly bathed and dried off from the bathroom heater. She then donned Zachary’s black tee shirt and grey sweat pants, then bundled up all of her clothes, and placed them in Zachary’s laundry hamper which was now full. She saw Zachary in the kitchen, listening to a piece on NPR and slicing some squash and zucchini.

She covered his eyes from behind and said, “Guess who?”

“Is it the lovely Tiffany Taylor?”

“You win!”

“What’s the prize?”

“It would be a sin if I gave it to you now, but I definitely want to, Zack Moore!”

Zachary turned around and beheld her, then spoke, “Good Lord, Tiffany, you’re so beautiful!”

“Oh, Zack, I’m a mess.”

“But those clothes I gave you, they accentuate all of your lovely features and, wow, I’ve never been so attracted to someone!”

Zachary blushed afterward.

Tiffany kissed both of his red cheeks then said, “You’re so cute when you blush. And I know I have found someone good if I am wearing a tee-shirt, sweat pants, my hair is a mess and he still thinks I am beautiful.”

“You would be beautiful no matter what you wear!”

“Aww. You’re really sweet!”

“Thank you!” Zachary said as he kissed her, then preheated his oven to 350 Degrees Fahrenheit.

“Do you need any help with dinner?” Tiffany asked.

“Well, I could use some help with the seasoning base,” Zachary replied.

“Just tell me what you need.”

“Very well,” Zach said, the placed a pot on his electric range and said, “Pour some olive oil until the bottom of the pot is covered, then add some minced onions, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, Oregano, dehydrated bell peppers, and brown sugar. They’re all in my cabinet to the right of my stove.”

Tiffany retrieved everything from the cabinets. She poured the olive oil until the bottom of the pot was covered, then asked, “How do you measure the other spices?”

“Just add some of each until the olive oil is no longer clear.”

“Are you sure?”

“I’m positive!” Zachary said as he kissed her.

Tiffany added the spices then Zachary added the sliced squash and zucchini.

She then asked, “What next?”

“Turn on the burner to very low, then stir every so often with a wooden spoon until everything carmelizes.”

“It’s nice to have a home-cooked meal. My parents usually buy those frozen Banquet Dinners.”

“Well, I eat those as well, only if I don’t have the time to cook,” Zachary paused, then continued, “Now keep stirring, but I will show you how I make meatballs.”

“Nice.”

Zachary took a plate of fresh ground beef from his refrigerator, then placed it in his mixing bowl. He also took a half-full bag of Mozzarella cheese from his refrigerator and added it to the mix, as he said, “The cheese gives the meatballs an extra flavor.” Zachary then added black pepper, seasoned salt, garlic powder, minced onion, and parsley to the mix. “Here’s the nasty part,” Zachary said as he washed his hands, then rinsed them and began to evenly mix the ground beef with the cheese and seasonings until it was consistent. The oven beeped, thereby indicating that it had reached the target temperature. Zachary then took a skillet and sprayed it with Pam. Afterward, they formed the ground beef mixture into little heaps the size of ping pong balls and placed them on the skillet and then in the oven. After closing the door, Zachary activated the stopwatch feature on his G-Shock.

A wonderful aroma filled the kitchen when Zachary said, “Time to add the sauce to the seasoning base.” He opened two jars of Ragu Garden Combination and poured them into the pot, then kissed Tiffany and said, “Now mix all of that and stir every now and then.”

Tiffany smiled sweetly as she stirred with the wooden spoon.

Suddenly Zachary had shooting pains in his lower back. By the expression on his face, he was unable to hide the fact that something was wrong.

Promptly, Tiffany asked, “What’s the matter, bae?”

“Oh, my wretched back is giving me trouble yet again.”

“Is it because of what happened today?”

“No. Please don’t worry about that, sweetheart. It’s not your fault at all, I frequently get back pain while cooking and doing many other activities as well.”

“Is there anything I can do?”

“You could hold me.”

“Okay, I’ll do that. I would want to do that anyway!”

“Then let’s relax on the couch while dinner cooks. We have a few minutes before the meatballs are done baking.”

Tiffany sat on one end of the couch and Zachary laid resting his head in her lap.

He looked up at her face with awestruck admiration while she smiled at him, playing with his hair and caressing his face.

Zachary took the remote then turned on his television and scanned for channels. There was only one channel coming in reliably enough, and it was playing a prime-time drama. Tiffany shuddered when the scene became violent. Zachary noticed, to which he turned the television off and said, “I’m sorry. If I knew that show would have upset you, I wouldn’t have watched it with you.”

“Do you usually watch that kind of stuff?”

“Not really. It’s just that was the only channel coming in at the moment. The weather affects my TV reception.”

“What radio station were you listening to earlier?”

“The local NPR station.”

“What’s that?”

“National Public Radio. It’s like PBS, but radio instead of television. I listen to NPR because it enhances my vocabulary, therefore improving my writing.”

“Do you listen to it a lot?”

“Yes.”

“What would be playing at this hour?”

“Classical Music.”

“Okay, nice! Do you think we could listen? Maybe it could inspire my painting when I get more art supplies.”

“Sure. I’ll turn my kitchen radio on.”

“I’ll do it, you rest.”

Tiffany then walked to the kitchen and switched the radio back on. They listened for a few minutes, then Zachary checked his watch. The twenty minutes were almost up.

Both walked to the kitchen and stood by the oven.

Zachary’s stopwatch feature on his G-Shock reached twenty minutes, so he opened the oven door, then with a potholder, removed the skillet and poured the meatballs along with the drippings into the pot of sauce. He then stirred the mixture and turned the oven and the burner off.

“Why you turned the burner off?” Tiffany asked.

“Because the mixture is hot enough to continue cooking, besides, we need to do laundry and I need to buy you some underwear.”

“Where can we get some?”

“There’s a Dollar General next door, we can go there.”

“I’ll just get a cheap six-pack of panties then.”

“Even the cheapest undergarments would make your bottom lovely!”

Tears filled Tiffany’s eyes as she said, “Thank you for saying that. You make me feel beautiful. My dad is always making comments about how big my butt is and that I shouldn’t eat so much.”

“I’m glad that I make you feel beautiful because, to me, you’re the most beautiful lady there is!”

“You’re making me want to commit that sin with you!”

“I want to commit that sin with you as well, but I am deathly afraid of losing you! As I’ve said before, I’d rather be obedient to my God and have you by my side for the rest of my life than have you for a few moments of pleasure only to lose you and never get you back. You’re worth the wait!”

Tiffany grabbed Zachary then pulled him to her and showered his face with kisses.

“Let’s go get me some panties,” Tiffany said, smiling from ear to ear.

“Would you also like some socks?”

“Sure, if you have the money.”

“I think I do.”

“Then let’s go.”

Tiffany borrowed a pair of socks from Zachary and then put them and her tennis shoes on.

Zachary then grabbed his key lanyard and flashlight as they walked out of his apartment, down the stairs, then to the Dollar General.

They entered and walked right to the clothing section. There was a six-pack of socks that Tiffany grabbed immediately. Then there were several six-packs of panties that Tiffany had considered until she saw one that was all different colors: one white, one lavender, one black, one pink, one flesh-colored, and one gray. “Zack, what do you think of these?” She asked.

“I am at a loss for words on how beautiful I think you would be in them!” Zachary replied.

“Then buy them for me!”

“Very well, sweetheart!”

Tiffany kissed Zachary with great passion and then said, “Thank you!”

Zachary kissed her in return and affectionately patted her bottom.

Both blushed and grinned as they embraced.

“Oh, I almost forgot, I need some Tide to wash our laundry,” Zachary said.

“That’s fine,” Tiffany replied.

With that, they walked to the detergent section and purchased a small bottle of Tide, then walked to the counter and checked out.

By the light of Zachary’s flashlight, they walked home. After entering, Tiffany secured her new socks and panties. Afterward, she carried the laundry basket while Zachary carried the bottle of Tide and a roll of quarters to the laundromat. They selected a washing machine, then placed the clothes in, paid the quarters, and started it. Then hand in hand they walked back up to Zachary’s apartment by the light of his flashlight.

Upon arriving home, Zachary received a text message stating a low balance alert in his checking account.

“Now, I’m going to show you how to make the pasta,” Zachary said. He took another pot and filled it with water from his kitchen tap. He then added a few drops of olive oil and some parsley. Finally, he took a one-pound box of dried spaghetti noodles, broke them in half, dropped them in the pot, and put it on to boil. When the pasta was boiled, Zachary heated the sauce, then said, “I’m going switch the laundry. When I return, let us eat. Don’t open the door to anyone but me.”

Tiffany nodded then kissed him.

Zachary locked his door behind him, then walked down to the laundromat by the light of his flashlight with the quarters in hand. He saw that the washing machine was finished so he transferred the laundry to a dryer, then placed the quarters in and started it. Afterwards, he left the laundromat and walked back up to his unit.

Tiffany was setting the table as he entered.

“I’ll serve us, sweetheart,” Zachary said.

“Thanks, bae!” Tiffany replied.

Zack served each of them a generous portion of spaghetti and meatballs. Afterward, he sat down and said grace, “Dear Heavenly Father, we thank You for this wonderful meal and we thank you for all the gifts and blessings that You have so graciously bestowed upon us. We also ask that you bless our relationship, keep us together forever and that You compel us to honor and glorify You with our lives. Please protect us from all who wish to do harm and please meet all of our needs, both seen and unseen, known and unknown. Bless this food for the nourishment of our bodies for Your service and glory. We make these prayers in Your Son Jesus’ Precious Name, Amen!”

As they were eating, Tiffany said, “I love hearing you pray, Zack!”

Zachary then asked, “Would you like to come to church with me tomorrow evening?”

“Church on a Wednesday?”

“Yes.”

“I mean, sure, I’m only used to church on either Saturday or Sunday.”

“I have church on Sunday as well.”

“I’ll go with you, both on Sunday and Wednesday. I feel a voice in my head that is urging me to go with you.”

“Wonderful!”

“This food is delicious, Zack!”

“Thank you. You know you helped me make it!”

“True.”

“And get used to it.”

“But everything I eat goes straight to my butt.”

“As I’ve said before, your bottom is very lovely!”

“What if it gets really big though?”

“Then that will mean more of it for me to adore and enjoy!”

“In a way, I’m glad my parents never let me have any freedom because now I am pure for you and if there is anyone worth losing my virginity to, it’s you, Zack!”

“And I’m glad that I have this disability and no other women wanted me, because we will be pure for each other and our honeymoon will be immensely special!”

“You still want me to marry you?” Tiffany asked in a puppy dog voice.

“Of course. You and no one else!”

“I’m falling for you, fast and hard Zack, so please don’t break me!”

“The feeling is mutual and let me say that I would rather die than break your heart!”

They finished up their meal, then placed the leftovers in Zachary’s refrigerator.

For a little while, they listened to more classical music on NPR. There was a break in the music and a weather forecast was given. The announcer stated that another round of thunderstorms would be making their way through the listening area during the overnight hours and that some had severe potential.

Zachary looked at his G-Shock and realized that his laundry was near done, so, he grabbed his basket, key lanyard, and flashlight, then he and Tiffany walked down to the laundromat. A thick scratchy wind was blowing through the complex as they walked across the parking lot and into the laundromat. There were a few seconds left on the dryer as they embraced, lost in each others’ eyes. The dryer buzzed, then Zachary loaded the freshly cleaned laundry into his basket. Tiffany carried it up to his unit and he escorted her.

She set the basket down on the living room floor.

“You can get your clothes out if you wish, but I’ll fold mine tomorrow. I need to wash my dishes before the next round of storms come through.”

“I’ll help you, Zachary.”

Together they washed and rinsed all of the dishes, then set them on the counter to dry.

Tiffany then asked, “Do you think you could read more of your stories to me?”

“Sure, I would be honored to!” Zachary replied.

With that, they walked to Zachary’s computer. Zachary sat down on the chair and Tiffany laid on the couch. Tiffany hung on to his every word, smiling from ear to ear. He read to her until they were very sleepy.

“Why don’t we get some rest?” Zachary asked.

“Okay, bae.” Tiffany replied.

She then went to the bathroom, took off Zachary’s sweat pants, and put on a pink pair of her new panties. She also put on another one of Zachary’s tee shirts, a grey one.

After she stepped out of the bathroom, Zachary beheld her with a mixture of tremendous admiration and immense lust.

He held her close to him and began to kiss her face, then her neck, then her chest, then her stomach as he caressed her buttocks.

“If you go any further, it will be a sin. But I would greatly enjoy it.”

“You’re right, Tiffany. And I don’t want to lose you as a result of that sin. No, I want you by my side forever!”

“That is my wish as well!”

Hand in hand, Zachary walked Tiffany to his bedroom, then tucked her in and gave her a long sweet goodnight kiss.

He then walked to his living room and pulled out the mattress of his futon and went to sleep…

…Hours passed by…

A severe thunderstorm had developed and had woken Tiffany up.

Wind, lightning, and thunder were constant.

She was very frightened, to the point of tears.

Tiffany walked out of bed, to Zachary’s living room.

She gently tapped him, “Zack…Zack…Zack…”

Finally, Zachary woke up and asked, “Tiffany are you all right?”

“I’m scared of the weather, Zack. Will you come hold me?”

“Sure, Tiffany. It would be a joy for you to sleep in my arms.”

“Then come right now.”

Zachary stepped off the couch, then followed Tiffany to his bedroom. They both climbed into his bed and pulled the covers over them.

Zachary held his arms around Tiffany’s waist and rested his face in the back of her neck.

Tiffany then said, “When I was a little girl, I was always afraid of the weather. I guess because my parents always said that God would kill me with lightning or a tornado because I was so wicked.”

“You’re very sweet and God loves you immensely. Your parents are the ones who are wicked.”

“I guess it is on my mind because I just left them and they are probably angry at me. I’d like to see the looks on their faces if they could see us cuddling and do nothing about it.”

Zachary kissed the back of her neck.

Tiffany pushed her buttocks against Zachary and then said, “I wish I could see the look on your face too, Zack because you get to feel my big butt all night long while I wear these sexy panties.”

“I admit that I am smiling more than I ever have and I do feel very privileged,” Zachary said as he held her even closer to him.

“Then hold me all night like this, bae!”

“Your wish is my command, sweetheart!”

A bright bolt of lightning flashed followed by a loud crash of thunder.

“It’s not as scary now that I am in your arms, Zack.”

Zachary simply kissed her as they soon fell asleep, happier than ever before…

Back to “The New Generation Gap”

How Zachary Met Tiffany-The New Generation Gap

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

On an overcast evening, Zachary Moore had driven to the mall to compare prices on some items he planned to buy when his SSDI check would be deposited in a few days. The reason why he was drawing SSDI was that he had injured his back whilst working as a roustabout in the shipyards six years ago. After the injury, he applied for a low-income apartment and was granted one four months later. He was a lonely twenty-five-going-on-twenty-six-year-old, but kept busy writing and working on computers. He had been employed, nearly full time from the ages of fifteen to nineteen, first as a shopping cart attendant then as a shipyard roustabout when he turned eighteen.

Meanwhile, Tiffany Taylor had snuck out of her parents’ house and went hang out with friends at the mall. She had been out of high school for over a year, but unable to land any sort of job. She had been growing up in such a toxic environment for the past nineteen years and desperately wanted out. Her parents were constantly at each others’ throats and took out the remainder of their frustrations on her, verbally, emotionally, and even physically. Still, she was nervous about all the human trafficking stories she had seen and heard and was raised in an extremely religious home, so she was still a virgin and wanted to stay that way until she met her future husband. Her parents refused to let her date though because she was under their roof with no real job. She had enough, hence sneaking out with her friends, in the first place. She also needed a ride to the mall to buy some more art supplies. When they arrived, one of her friends proceeded to light up a joint, another one took a hit of Acid. Tiffany freaked out, grabbed her phone and her messenger bag, which was filled with her art supplies and a few other personal items, and then left the car. Storm clouds began to move in and the sky grew dark. Tiffany walked into the mall entrance then directly to a locally owned art supply store which she frequented. It was next to Sears, where Zachary was looking at some tools and clothing. He also was in the market for a new computer that he could write on since his current computer was getting to be out of date.

They both walked out of their stores and Tiffany was walking forward, but facing sideways. Her eyes were fixated on a mural that was on the wall. She hoped one day to get a job painting murals in public spaces. Meanwhile, Zachary was writing down prices of the items he wanted in a composition book and not paying attention to where he was walking either. They bumped into each other and Zachary fell to the floor.

“Gosh durnit, my back! It hurts!” He gnashed his teeth in great pain, took several deep breaths, then looked up to see whom he bumped into.

It was as if most of the pain instantly ceased when he laid eyes on Tiffany.

She looked down at him and said, “I’m so sorry, let me help you up.”

Their hands met and there was even more of a spark of attraction.

“Do you need medical attention?” Tiffany asked.

“I think I’ll be fine. I just need to rest on a bench for a while.”

Tiffany then pulled Zachary to his feet and asked, “Could I walk you to a bench? I want to make sure you’re all right.”

“Sure. I don’t mind.” They walked.

“How’s your back now?”

“Still hurts, but just slightly.”

There was an awkward silence, then Tiffany asked, “You’re not going to sue me, are you?”

“No. I wouldn’t have a case anyway, my back was damaged years prior to this. So it’s very sensitive.”

“You’re just being nice.”

“No. It’s true. I injured my back on the job six years ago and have been drawing disability ever since.”

“How old are you?”

“I’m 25 and will be 26 on February 1st.”

“Wow, you don’t look that old. I mean, you’re really cute.”

“Thank you for the kind compliment, but you need not sweet-talk me, I promise I won’t sue for even a penny.”

“No. I really mean it, you’re cute.”

They both blushed but then Zachary asked, “How old are you? You may think I am cute, but I must not keep company with a minor.”

“I’m nineteen but I will be twenty on April 26th.”

“I see.”

“So what is your name?”

“Zachary Moore, but those who like me call me Zack.”

“Well, I’d like to call you Zack, then.” They both blushed, then Tiffany continued, “I’m Tiffany Taylor, by the way.”

“That’s a pretty name.”

“Thanks. How do you feel about me calling you Zack?”

“Quite happy.”

“Because I like you?”

“Yes.”

“Is there a chance you like me as well?”

“Well, I tell you the truth, I was in a great deal of pain when I fell, but I beheld your pretty face, and in that very moment 90% of the pain ceased. I must have had a rush of endorphins.”

“Aww. You’re really sweet to tell me that.”

“It’s true, you know.”

They both blushed again.

Tiffany then asked, “So what’s in your composition book?”

“Oh, this? I wrote some prices down for items that I plan to purchase shortly. I’m researching to get the best possible deal.” Zachary paused then said, “Also I have some ideas for stories I am working on.”

“Wow, you’re a writer?”

Zachary blushed, then said, “Yes. I always wanted to pursue a career as a writer, but couldn’t stomach the additional academic requirements. I was employed from the ages of fifteen to nineteen but would write on my days off. I read volumes of online tutorials to improve my grammar.”

“That’s amazing. Could you share your story ideas with me?”

“Sure.”

Zachary began to read to Tiffany.

She stared at him, smiling from ear to ear.

Suddenly, she felt slight distress as she asked “Do you have any girlfriend or wife?”

“No. I am wholly single.”

“That’s hard to believe, I mean you’re cute, you’re sweet and you write these beautiful stories.”

“But I am afflicted with a wretched disability, so no women desire me.”

“It’s their loss.”

“Thank you, that means a great deal to me!”

“What is your living situation?”

“I live alone in a low-income apartment.”

“At least you have your own place, I stay with my parents and they are always in a bad mood and constantly bicker. They are uptight about everything I like and take out all their anger on me.”

“Seems to me that they are suffering from a lack of intimacy.” Zachary blushed then said, “Oh, sorry that came out wrong.”

No, I think you’re right. I’ve never once seen them show any affection towards each other.”

“I would never desire a relationship such as that. I mean if I was blessed with a special someone in my life, I would forever be showering her with my affections.”

“You’re really sweet. I know that you say no one wants you and I truly think that it’s their loss. Do you think it could be my gain?”

“Yes. I’d desire that wholeheartedly!”

“Then why don’t you ask me out?”

“Very well, Tiffany Taylor, will you be my girlfriend? I don’t have very much to offer, but I solemnly promise to make you my queen and shower you with affection, if you say yes. And not only that, I promise you my time, my loyalty, and my fidelity.”

Tiffany’s eyes twinkled as she beamed, then nodded several times and strongly embraced him as she spoke, “Oh most definitely, yes, Zack Moore!”

Zachary put his arms around Tiffany as well and held her close to him.

She rested her head on his chest for just a moment, to which he kissed the top of her head.

“That’s sweet, but I want a real kiss.”

“Very well,” Zachary replied.

Both were filled with giddiness as their eyes closed, their faces met and their lips pressed for a moment then sucked with passion.

Fireworks went off in both of their minds as they exchanged several more kisses until a security guard shouted, “Halt! Knock off with the kissing right this instant or I am kicking both of you out of my mall!”

“Could I have your phone number, for us to keep in contact?” Zachary asked.

“Of course, you silly goose! I was hoping you’d ask.”

Tiffany then pulled a blank piece of paper out of her messenger bag, tore it in half, then wrote her cell phone number on one piece. She then handed it along with her pencil and the blank piece to Zachary, to which he wrote his number on the other and handed it back to her. Subsequently, they programmed the numbers in each others’ phones.

Tiffany noticed the clock on her phone and became nervous as she spoke, “Oh no, it’s 5:15 my parents will be home soon.”

Seconds later there was a tremendously loud crash of thunder.

She assumed the fetal position and began to rock back and forth, then said, “I have no ride home and I don’t want to walk home because I am deathly afraid of lightning. Some friends drove me to the mall, but then I left them when I saw they had drugs. They probably wouldn’t give me a ride now.”

Zachary held her gently and said, “I can drive you home, but I respect you far too much to drive you home in this sort of weather, thereby placing you in danger of an accident.”

It now began to rain in torrents as the lightning fiercely flashed and the thunder angrily rumbled.

“You’re right. It’s just my parents will be furious when they get home and I’m not there. Of course, they’ll be furious with me regardless.”

“Would they ever strike you?”

“Yes.”

“Good Lord! Even though you’re an adult.”

“They said that if I don’t like it, that’s tough because I’m under their roof. They’ve even burned my paintings that I could have sold simply because they want me to work hard for a living.”

“I think they’re miserable and they believe you ought to be miserable as well.”

“They would also throw in how they paid for my education in catholic school for all those years and I’m not doing anything with it.” She paused then said, “It was the arts program at my school that made me want to be an artist. Of course, then, they would accuse me of being smart-aleck.”

“I despised going to school, to the point where I dropped out and became employed. I knew early on that high school taught very few useful things. To me, high school is a deliberately broken system used by this wretched society of ours to crush the wonderous spirits of youth and turn them into compliant, soul-less drones. All a high school degree proves is that the holder of it can do many tasks that he or she desires not to do. Most employers demand people exactly like that, sadly. I wish I would have paid more attention in English because it’s just now that I am catching up on my grammar skills.”

“Wow! I’ve noticed that too. It’s just I had no choice but to go to school.”

“Let me guess, your parents would beat you if you didn’t, right?”

“Exactly.”

“My parents agreed that I would work as much as legally possible if I dropped out. I’m glad they made me work because now I have a pretty decent income from SSDI.”

“When did you drop out?”

“I was seventeen and still a freshman.”

“Wow! But you write and speak so eloquently.”

“Thank you!”

“And you do come out with brilliant ideas. To tell the truth, I would love to have you read to me while I paint.”

“And I would love to examine your paintings and be inspire to write even more.”

“Where have you been all my life, Zack?”

“Oh nowhere really, but I do think there was a reason why we bumped into each other!”

“So do I!” Tiffany paused, then continued, “How much money do you get a month?”

“$1024.”

“Wow, that’s about the same my mom clears in a month. And how much is your rent?”

“It’s like two hundred something.”

“The utilities are fairly cheap, I don’t subscribe to cable, my cell phone is only $50 a month which provides me unlimited talking and texting and I subscribe to home Internet at a significant discount. I also receive a few dollars worth of nutritional benefits.”

“Wow. You have it made then!”

“Yes. And I’m willing to support you, and even spoil you if you so desire.”

“My parents wouldn’t like you since you’re a high school dropout, living in the projects on disability, and they would think your writing is a waste of time, but I like you, a lot.”

“You’re a legal adult you know.”

“I know, that’s why I am here talking with you instead of cooped up in my parents’ house doing endless chores.”

“I feel very honored that you are here with me and I just hope and pray it continues.”

“You’re so sweet, and cute I know I already said it, but I can’t help it. You’re also very smart. My parents would find ways to keep us apart though unless you were like a strong catholic.”

“I’m not catholic but a Christian. I converted at the age of nineteen.”

“What were you before?”

“My family was catholic, but I saw right through it at an early age.”

“How did you convert?”

“I was employed in the shipyards and there was this attractive woman who was interested in me. It was a Friday, September 29, 2006, and she was planning to have me meet her after work. I won’t lie, she wanted to fornicate with me. I was quite excited in anticipation for that night. Needless to say, I was very distracted and feeling so overconfident that I attempted to lift a heavy piece of pipe all by myself and had crudely announced that I would be laying pipe that night to my buddies. As further I attempted to lift that miserable pipe, my back gave out and was instantly ruined. I was in such grievous pain that I was rushed to the hospital and not able to visit that woman. When she learned how I was now disabled, she didn’t desire me anymore. I later found out that she has genital herpes, genital warts and God only knows what else. I required surgery on my back to repair the damage. While I was laid up at the hospital, the chaplain visited me, preached The Gospel to me, and subsequently prayed with me. I came to Christ right at that very moment and never looked. The surgery was successful since the doctors prevented the damage from spreading, but informed me of how I could never do any physical labor again.”

“Are you still a virgin?”

Zachary hung his head, almost in shame, then blushed then nodded.

“Don’t worry about it, I am as well!” Tiffany said as she kissed him, then continued, “By the way, our relationship will be very special!”

“My God, Tiffany you’re right! If I was ever content at being a twenty-five-year-old virgin, it is in this very moment.” Zachary paused, then continued, “I had been praying for years that God send me someone to love, and I must admit, He knew what he was doing when He sent you!”

“I know we just met, but I never felt this way about anyone the way I feel about you!” Tiffany confessed as she kissed him.

“The feeling is mutual. I mean I’ve been attracted to other females before, but, you remind me of a good character that which I would write about.”

“Aww. Maybe that’s why I like the stories you’ve told me so far, because I somehow identify with your characters, at least the good ones.”

“Thank you so much! I have fulfilled my literary purpose if I am provoking those very emotions from you!”

“If it wasn’t a sin, I would want your body. But not just your body, your entire being.” Tiffany’s face then sunk as she asked, “Are you even able to perform at intimacy though? I know your back is messed up.”

Zachary caressed her gently softly looked into her eyes and spoke, “I certainly am. The surgery was quite expensive but my company furnished the payments for it and the damage to my nerves that connect my spine to my reproductive organ was fully corrected. God had to have had a hand in it.” Zachary paused, kissed her, and then continued, “Now I think I know why!”

“In a very big way, I’m kind of glad no one else wanted you because that means I’ll have you all to myself,” Tiffany said as she grabbed him and stole a kiss.

Zachary’s face suddenly grew distressed.

Tiffany’s quickly noticed and then asked also with distress, “Did I say something wrong?”

Zachary gently held her and soberly replied, “No. You did not. However, God just spoke to me and said that we must needs forego intimate relations until marriage. It’s almost as if I think God would reverse the healing to my nerves if we engaged in carnal relations before exchanging those vows.”

“You’re right. Then we would become like my parents and drift further and further apart.”

“May it never be!”

“We can wait until marriage, though.” Tiffany paused, then asked in a puppy dog voice, “Would you even want me to marry you though?”

“I most certainly would! However, we would have to be wed without a marriage license, which means no catholic priest would perform the ceremony. I know of a few Christian pastors who would though.”

“Why no marriage license?”

“Because I would lose my Medicaid coverage in the event you were legally married to me and became a successful artist or even worked a regular job.”

“That’s fine, we don’t need a piece of paper, just God’s recognition.”

“Marriage is none of the government’s business anyway! Notice how everything the government touches, eventually rots.”

“Well, I only would want to be an artist, nothing else.”

“Then I fully support you in that endeavor! I dread the very thought of you slaving away in an occupation of which you’re not absolutely happy with.” Zachary kissed her, then continued, “I’ll even purchase your art supplies.”

“Where will I stay, though? If my parents find out that we are together and you bought me those supplies, they will destroy all of it and then beat me.”

“Then they are brazenly violating your personal space, your sacred body, and your priceless dignity.”

There was a bright flash of lightning followed by a piercing thunder roll. Seconds later, the current supplying the mall with electricity was disrupted.

Tiffany shrieked in terror.

Zachary quickly drew a small flashlight from his pocket and calmly switched it on.

The bright LED lit up their immediate area as Zachary said with confidence, “I always try to be prepared, so I never leave home without one of these.”

A smile returned to Tiffany’s face as she said, “You’re so sexy!”

Zachary and Tiffany began to heavily kiss and pet each other with tremendous affection by the light of the flashlight.

Minutes later, the security guards and janitors were rounding up all the customers.

One guard was speaking into a bullhorn “A tornado warning has just been issued, please follow our staff to the center of the mall!”

Zachary and Tiffany complied with the request and followed the guards with the rest of the customers.

The sky was once overcast but was now dark as midnight as Zachary and Tiffany laid down against the wall, Zachary shielding Tiffany’s body with his by the light of his flashlight.

Tiffany looked at her phone and realized there was no signal. She put her phone away and closed her eyes as Zachary held her tightly.

The roaring of the winds intensified more and more.

Both Zachary and Tiffany trembled in fear.

Tiffany began to recite the rosary out loud as the winds grew louder and glass began to break. Many mall patrons and personnel alike began to scream in terror.

Zachary then prayed out loud, “Heavenly Father, I humbly ask that you quiet and stifle this horrid storm so that no one shall be harmed and that Your Name be Glorified above all names. Please protect all of us, according to Your riches and glory. Moreso, draw everyone present nearer to You, even unto salvation. I make these requests in that Precious and Powerful Name of Your Son Jesus Christ and hereby proclaim that He is indeed God come in the flesh! Amen…”

A moment passed, then the storm quickly died down.

Everyone stayed put but a great relief of anxiety came upon all of them.

Minutes later, an all-clear was declared.

Zachary kissed Tiffany, then said, “Praise God, that terrible storm is over and we weren’t harmed!”

The room was dark, so no one could identify exactly who had prayed out loud but there were rumors throughout the mall that God heard a young man’s prayers on behalf of them and that they were indeed spared.

Tiffany helped Zachary up from the floor, as she embraced him and pelted his face with many kisses.

Hand in hand they began to walk, by the light of his flashlight when they were instructed by mall personnel to leave because there had been some structural damage. Tiffany’s phone beeped and buzzed indicating that she had a new voicemail.

Zachary said, “I guess I’ll drive you home. Call me tonight though, before you go to bed.”

Tiffany nodded as they walked to his 2004 Chevy Cobalt.
The sinking sun was starting to break through the clouds.

He opened the passenger door for her, then kissed her as she stepped in.

Afterwards, he stepped in on the driver’s side.

Both fastened their seatbelts when Tiffany said, “Let me check my voicemail, if it’s from one of my parents, you will see how horrible they are.”

She called her voicemail number, entered her PIN then activated her speakerphone feature.

There were two voicemails:

The first one was from her mom, “Tiffany Anne Taylor, where are you, little girl? You’re supposed to be at home doing chores while your dad and I are at work. It is unfair that you get to go out and have fun while mooching off of us as we slave away at our jobs. Your dad is going to tare up your hiney when he finds you, young lady. There will be other consequences as well for your rebellious behavior! Now get home immediately!”

The next one was from her dad, “Tiffany, this is your *blank* damn dad! I pay for your ****ing phone service so I expect you to answer when I ****ing call. And where in the mother****ing hell are you? You’re not at home, that’s for sure and you’re probably laying out with some lazy stupid ****ing bum. When I find out who that good for nothing son of a ***** is I am going to blow his **** for brains out with my .357 Magnum, then pour gasoline on his useless body and set it ablaze while roast some mother****ing marshmallows over it then I’m going to shove those marshmallows down your ****ing throat. Afterwards, I’ll flush his worthless ashes down my filthy ****ing toilet that you didn’t clean. Then I am going to beat your ungrateful *** to a mother****ing pulp until it ****ing bleeds and I’ll burn all of your *blank* damn stupid paintings. Then I’m going to blast your stupid ****ing computer with my 10 gauge shotgun to make damn sure all of your filthy creations of yours are destroyed. Finally, I’m going to smash your ****ing TV and radio with my *blank* damn sledgehammer, because all you watch and listen to on there is pure ****ing trash that teaches you how to be a spoiled degenerate brat. I work way too ****ing hard for you to lay on your fat ****ing *** all *blank* damn day drawing those trashy pictures and ****ing around with those bums. You need to get a real ****ing job and stop living in this *blank* damn fantasy world. You will come home right this ****ing instant if you know what is *blank* damn good for you!”

Zachary had become pale as a glass of fresh milk.

Tiffany spoke, “Despite what my dad said in there, I’m still a virgin and deep down he knows it because he is possessive of my virginity.”

Zachary quickly collected himself and spoke, “I believe you. And just so you know, I would never use that sort of language in front of a woman or girl. However, we must needs make a backup copy of these threatening messages in the case your dad terminates your phone service.”

“How can we do that?”

“I have a voice recorder app on my phone.”

At once, Tiffany played both of those messages again while Zachary recorded them to his phone’s internal storage.

Tiffany then spoke as tears were flowing profusely from her eyes, “I never want to go home again. I’m afraid of what will happen to me and worse what will happen to you.”

“We need to show this to the Justice of the Peace and have a restraining order placed against your dad. All of his guns will be confiscated and he will be immediately arrested if he comes near us. That is if you’re in agreement with doing so.”

“Yes. I am. I know what his temper is like and what he is capable of.”

Zachary looked at his watch which indicated 6:05. He then spoke, “Well we cannot see the Justice of the Peace until tomorrow morning, but it’s best we lay low.”

“Yes. I don’t want my dad to see us together.”

“Was he always so ill-tempered?”

“As far as I can remember.”

“Well I knew a lack of intimacy can put anyone on edge, but Good Lord, he takes it to the extreme.”

“I learned in my preteens that when a woman has a full hysterectomy, she loses all interest in sex and can become very cold-hearted. And when a man stops having intimacy, he is easily angered, by anything and everything. My parents never had any kids after me and I noticed that they were always angry at me. My older siblings said they used to be pleasant before I was born.” Tears rolled down Tiffany’s face once again and her voice broke as she said, “That means I’m an accident and they never wanted me.”

Zachary wiped Tiffany’s tears with his shirt as he gently rubbed her face and said, “You’re not an accident at all. I prayed for years that God would send you to me and now he has. You’re going to be a great artist one day and I just hope that you’ll have me by your side, maybe even using my stories for inspiration.”

“Yes, of course. I always thought I would end up marrying a man who is just like my dad, but you are so sweet and gentle. You’re nothing like him. I mean, you speak and write like the Puritan ministers I learned about in American English my Junior year and he speaks as if he were possessed by a legion of demons. I was hesitant to ask you if I could stay at your place, because, I still didn’t know what kind of man you were. However, when you said those prayers and God stopped that tornado, I knew you must have a clean heart because God wouldn’t answer the prayers of a man with wicked intentions. So, could I stay with you? I mean I have nowhere else to go.”

“I would be honored for you to stay with me. You can even have my bed and I will sleep on my futon in the living room.”

“How big is your bed?”

“Full-sized.”

“Then you could share your bed with me. I wouldn’t mind.”

“Believe me, I tremendously desire to hold you while we slumber. I just don’t want to provoke the chastening rod of my Heavenly Father.”

“You’re right.”

“I’d rather be obedient to my God and therefore have you by my side for a lifetime than have a few fleeting moments of immense pleasure with you, only to later lose you.”

“You indeed are a good man, Zack. I’m so happy I found you!”

Zack smiled from ear to ear, then blushed until he was red in the face as he said, “Thank you, Tiffany. No one has ever told me that before.”

“Why don’t we go to your place? I am a little hungry though.”

“I was going to get us some corn dogs and cherry soda, but then the mall was damaged. What would you like?”

“Do you have any food at home?”

“I have a pound of ground beef, some vegetables, a jar of sauce, some pasta, some cheeses, herbs, and spices. How would you like spaghetti and meatballs from scratch?”

“I would love that!”

“Are you okay with eating meat on a Friday?”

“It doesn’t bother me.”

“Good, because that rule is nowhere in the Bible, rather, it was created by the roman catholic church for corrupt financial reasons.”

“I’m beginning to also think that catholicism is phony. When I started to pray the rosary, the winds became more violent, but when you prayed, the storm quickly calmed down.” Tiffany paused then said, “I want what you have.”

“I’d be honored for you to come to church with me. My pastor can explain it better than I can.”

“I’ll come with you to church or anywhere else.”

Zachary started his car, then began to pray, “Heavenly Father, please grant us safe travels. Please also open up Tiffany’s heart and ears for what my pastor tells her. Please also keep Tiffany and me together forever and may our relationship perpetually honor and glorify You. May we always treat each other with kindness, respect, and even reverence. May we always show each other affection and strive to be unequivocally faithful to one another. Protect us from all those who wish to do harm. I love you Heavenly Father and I make all of these requests in Your Son Jesus’ Holy Name. Amen. And thank You, Lord.”

“I love hearing you pray. You sound even better than the priest at my high school, who was so repetitive.”

Zachary blushed again and said, “Thank you. I just pray when God tells me to pray. He helps me find the words.”

With that, Zachary put his car in gear then drove his car through the rain-soaked roads and highways until they came to his apartment complex on the outskirts of the city. They walked up his steps and into his front door just as the sun was going down…

Back to “The New Generation Gap”

An Exile in Genuine Plaza

This came to me in a dream when I was 15 years old. That means it took me 19 years to get it into the text at the time I am writing this. I’m not sure why I haven’t done so, sooner, but better late than never, right. It was a turbulent time for me at the age of 15, but also, little did I know that I was a writer in the making. I always had interesting and lucid dreams and they kept me entertained during my otherwise boring slumber. Now all that appeared in the story, didn’t appear in the dream. I added many things, because between age 15 and now I gained quite a deal of life experiences.

Without further ado, here we go:

I’ve been rejected by and expelled from the affluent people of whom I formerly dwelt amongst.

I never felt right with them anyway.

Therefore, I took what I could carry and left this wretched place, never to look back.

I travel for hours until the late afternoon, then wind up in a ghetto.

It is not like an average American ghetto, save the authenticity.

Yes, it is run down. Yes, the houses and buildings are older. Yes, the people are hard-pressed.

…But…

Despite all this destitution, it is a peaceful and happy place.

I walk around and take it all in.

I hear the music and news broadcasts coming out of a dozen different radios. Some words are foreign, either from Slavic or Romance languages, the rest are in English.

I see young women in kerchiefs staring out their kitchen windows as they prepare the evening meals.

I hear the socket wrenches turning and clicking as repairs are being made to vehicles and other machinery.

I see older women congregating in front of the drug store with their newly purchased prescriptions.

I hear a flock of birds singing as they take off into the sunset.

I see children running around and playing in the streets.

I hear refuse being placed in cans.

I see men of all ages standing in the alleyways, some are fellowshipping, others are keeping watch they are all carrying flashlights and knives, and, some are carrying revolvers.

I hear the wheels of shopping carts rolling on the sidewalks, with the accompanying footsteps.

I see an artist captivating the moment of his surroundings in a painted portrait.

I hear a violinist playing rich music in harmony with all that is around her.

I see many young lovers caressing each other while sitting on the steps.

I hear telephones ringing nearby and tugboat whistles in the distance.

Then there is one beautiful girl, about my age, standing under a fire escape, staring and smiling at me.

I smile back, totally captivated by her gaze.

She motions for me to come to her.

With giddiness, I begin to walk.

She brings me to her dwelling, then to her bed.

We sit and talk.

Our hearts flutter.

She holds my hands.

We keep talking, I amuse her with my many stories, when she steals a kiss.

I kiss her in return.

The passions between us begin to build but then her younger sister walks in.

We’ve been caught.

I’m nervous, as the rest of the family surrounds us.

…But wait…

They’re not angry with me.

No.

They are very kind and welcoming, the complete opposite of where I was before.

We walk down to the nook between the kitchen and the entrance and they give me a generous plate of food.

It looks very odd but tastes like something from Heaven.

I heartily and happily eat as I explain to them how I am an exile and have nowhere to go.

They prepare an inflatable mattress for me and lay it on the kitchen floor.

I set my bag down.

They see I have no clothes, except for what I am wearing so they take my measurements, then, in time, hand me some bright white tee shirts, durable khaki pants, soft grey socks, and sturdy brown work boots.

The girl and I sit on my borrowed mattress, exchanging our affections, for hours, but time seems to pass by like a shooting star.

The lights and radios are then turned off but the fans are turned on.

She kisses me goodnight and walks to her shared bedroom.

I stare at the cracked ceiling and soon fall asleep, finally, with a deep sense of belonging…

Back to “Works of Fiction”

A Dilemma in a Diner-Confessions of an UnHappily Married Blogger

…December 1, 2012…

Christmas is only a few weeks away and I’ll be turning 26 in a few more weeks.

So my wife’s sister recently had a baby and now wants her to spend the night and help her since her husband isn’t home.

Ever since giving birth, her sister has become very mean-spirited.

I would usually spend the night as well, just to be with my wife, but her sister doesn’t want to. She does this just to be difficult, I think.

My wife automatically complies with all of her family members’ requests, but it takes an act of Congress for her to even consider my requests. This is one of the reasons, but not the only reason, why I am unhappily married.

With that I drop her off at her sister’s house, then I decide to go out for a drive and look at night trains.

Speaking of trains, my wife frequently curses me lower than a dog because I have an interest in trains. Never mind what her family members are interested in, she’s silent about that, but she constantly complains about how I like trains. Here is another reason why I am unhappily married.

Unfortunately, I don’t see any and my scanner isn’t picking anything up either.

So I continue driving into the night. It’s dark on these bypass roads. And the locals are ticked off because I am driving the posted speed limit.

After driving a while in these sticks, I realize that I am quite hungry, so I head towards the city and find a diner.

I sit at a table and order some chili cheese fries.

While waiting for my fries to cook, I notice an absolutely beautiful young lady sitting with her mother at a table across the room from me.

She looks to be about 18 maybe a little older, but I’m not sure.

Of course, she is plus-sized and wearing a dress that becomes her. I mean it accentuates all of her lovely curves and inches!

The glasses she is wearing make her look cute and I wish I could play with her long brown hair!

And when I notice her busty breasts, all I can say is, “Wow!”

I can also see her thick, creamy thighs and a part of me wants to look even further up her dress but a bigger part of me is determined to be a gentleman instead.

With every ounce of strength, I successfully refrain from looking up her dress.

But, according to Jesus Christ, Who is God come in the flesh, I’ve already committed adultery by now, at least in the heart.

God be thanked that where sin abounded, grace abounded much more.

Still, I don’t like to abuse The Grace that has been so lovingly imparted to me and purchased at such a tremendous Price!

How I wish I was single and free at this very moment!

I haven’t seen someone so beautiful in quite a while.

She glances at me as well, now and then. I want to smile at her when she does, but I know it will only lead to trouble.

Speaking of smiles, she has the most precious and gentle smile. It’s almost like something from the Heavenly realm.

Speaking of Heavenly, adultery is a blatant spurning of God’s Holy Law.

I’ve committed enough sins, especially in my younger days and I don’t need adultery to be added to them.

Still, I wonder what she is like, and not just sexually, but in all aspects, what is she like? What makes her happy? What causes her distress? What is her favorite kind of books and music? What kind of guys does she like? Is she sweet? Is she shy? Would she like to read my written work?

Oh, I long to know all of it!

Well, come to think of it, I am in a fairly large city and no one here knows me, so I could theoretically go up to her and talk, and see what happens, but I am, unfortunately, a married man, albeit unhappily married and while none of these city people may care, there is a God Who can see and He would be undoubtedly offended.

But speaking of God, my God, this young lady is so beautiful!

I want her so badly but I know I cannot have her and also have peace in my conscience.

Maybe I’ll just create a character based on her in one of my stories.

Everyone is wondering if the world will indeed end in a few weeks or not because of that Mayan Calendar prediction, and I won’t lie, I do think of, at least, The Rapture and am trying to be on my best behavior.

I must needs do the right thing and get out of this place.

So, with that, I finish my fries and whatever soft drink I am drinking, take one last look at the beautiful young lady of whom I had the privilege of beholding this evening, pay my bill then get in my car and go home.

On the way home, I do see one train and I always like seeing trains at night. That’s a bit of a silver lining behind a dark cloud, right?

Upon arriving home, I spend the remainder of the evening listening to train traffic on my scanners until my medicine kicks in and I fall asleep, alone.

I think this is the first time I ever experience a whole night in a house by myself.

Back to “Confessions of an UnHappily Married Blogger”

Another Excerpt from “The Textfile”

After Anna sat down, she looked around the whole room, then happened to glance at the bar. She noticed a young man sitting there eating peanuts and sucking on a bottle of Budweiser. He was dressed in long khaki pants and a white T-shirt, stained with many oil and grease spots. He had dirty blonde hair, covered by a brown newsboy hat and she could see that he also had a thick beard.

Anna felt an attraction to him somehow and wondered how she could get his attention. She pondered, then the idea came to her. She pretended to sneeze a cute little sneeze. The young man currently had the end of the beer bottle to his mouth and was taking a long sip. Finally, he put it down.

She made her attempt and let out a cute little, “Choo!”

The young man looked away from the bar and beheld her, then said, “God bless you.”

“Awe, thanks!” Anna said with a giggle.

The young man was about to sip on his Budweiser again, but he looked at her a second time. He saw she had beautiful pale skin, strawberry blonde hair, bright hazel eyes. He also noticed the long skirt and blouse she was wearing that covered almost all of her skin. He stared. He kept staring at her. She smiled. He smiled back, then blushed and looked away.

Anna pretended to sneeze again and let out a “K-Choo!”

The young man turned around again and said, “God save you!”

Anna then said, “Thanks. It must be all the dust from these peanuts shells that are stirring up my allergies.”

“You have such a cute sneeze,” He said, then looked at her booth and asked, “Is this seat taken?”

“No, I guess not,” Anna said.

“Then may I come and sit with you?” The young man asked.

“Sure, that would be nice,” Anna replied, smiling from ear to ear.

The young man took his beer and came to her table, then said, “I’ve never seen you in here before and I come here every day after work to kill a few beers.”

“This is my first time here,” Anna said, slightly nervous

“Well, I hope it’s not your last. I’m Grayson Thomas, by the way.”

“Anna Ryan.”

“Wow, I didn’t know there were any Ryans in Melody.”

Contact Me

Back to “The Textfile”

A Full Synopsis of my “Grocer and Writer” Stories

My “Grocer and Writer” stories are an attempt to portray life in post-modern or very near future American society. None of the characters have names, I cannot fully understand what made me choose that route when I began the stories, but I find it works, at least for now. The two main characters are named in another ever so slightly related story that I am concurrently working on.

The stories center around the lives of a twenty-two/twenty-three-year-old, mildly Autistic grocery clerk by day and writer by night and his seventeen/eighteen-year-old girlfriend with an under-active thyroid gland.

Though it is not officially stated in any of the stories, the setting takes place in New Orleans, Louisiana and the surrounding areas of.

Yes, my characters have flaws that would make them undesirable to most, but they fully accept and love each other immensely. This was designed to teach that there is a someone for everyone. Unfortunately, most people are offended by this for whatever reason be it legit or not. Okay, there are other controversial themes such as their age difference. They are indeed five years apart, but it’s NOT like he is 17/18 and she is only 12/13, which would indeed be highly inappropriate and unacceptable, not only in my opinion but also in the courts’ and most of the general public’s opinion as well. When they meet she is 17 going on 18 and he is 22 going on 23. They eventually have the girl’s parents’ approval and they do intend to marry, so please let’s put this age difference thing to bed once and for all. The other controversies, I cannot explain away so easily. There are some racial/ethnic and religious tensions. There is a world war looming on the horizon, but also violent crime and terrorism are also briefly mentioned. If that isn’t enough there is also prescription drug abuse and marital troubles. Finally, there is class struggle. Sounds like a lot of fun, right? Well, it is indeed a portrayal of post-modern or very near future American society. Oscar Wilde said it best, when he said, “Art imitates life and life imitates art.” I was writing what I observe and perceive in everyday life in people around me, but also in my own life experiences. That is truly what inspired this, just daily observations etched into my at least barely creative mind.

…Anyway…

Here is a full synopsis of the plot, and you, the reader, please decide for yourself, whether or not this offends you. Feel free to quit reading this at any time:

In the prequel, which I wrote in September of 2018, my male character is swamped with a lot of groceries that he must get on the shelf. He instead is thinking of all the wonderful stories he wants to write. He also mentions the fact that he is on the Spectrum but says how if he had someone who loved him in spite of it, he would treat her like a queen. He mentions how tomorrow is Thanksgiving and he will be off, so he could be able to write then. Likewise, the young lady who will become his girlfriend is at home dealing with her alcoholic and pill addict mother and how her parents are always fighting. She also mentions her glandular problem and ho it makes her obese. She wishes someone would love her for her. Her parents fight into the night and there is little food in the house because her mother binge eats. She states that she is looking forward to tomorrow because there will be a lot of food, but she also thinks of ending her life. A voice tells her not to give up…

At the beginning of the plot, which this piece was written in July of 2014, my male character is sitting in a public park (one could assume City Park) on Thanksgiving writing love stories in a composition book. At the same time, my female character’s parents are bickering and she leaves her house in Old Metairie on foot, crosses the Parish Line and walks to City Park. She sees him sitting down and writing and is instantly attracted. Eventually, he notices her and they hit it off immediately, though he is shy and cautious at first because of their age difference. He reads his love stories to her, to which she becomes more attracted to him. They exchange contact information and snuggle together on the park bench until it gets dark and cold. The first chronological piece ends with them entering a loving relationship, then my male character driving her back home to Old Metairie…

The next day, Black Friday, which I wrote in May of 2015, my male character is getting off of work and pulling up to his home in Mid City. My female character calls him, but he explains how he doesn’t have unlimited voice minutes (it was 2014-2015 when I thought of this and some prepaid plans did not offer unlimited minutes at the time.) He tells her that he has unlimited texting and would love to have a conversation with her that way. She agrees. They converse through SMS messages and he finds out that she is a virgin (he is too, but doesn’t announce it to her at that time.) He reveres her even more so than previously after finding that out. They get to know each other better and their relationship strengthens. The piece concludes with my female character’s pill-addict mother waking up from a deep sleep, ending their conversation…

I wrote this piece initially in June of 2015, but a week later, my male character has the day off and also was paid, so he calls his girlfriend and tells her he would like to take her on a date (let’s assume to The River Walk, though geographic locations aren’t officially mentioned in the stories themselves.) As they are talking on the phone, my female character states that she loves him, but the signal fades just as she says it. He tells her he didn’t hear what she said, so she repeats herself. He tells her how his feelings are indeed mutual and that he would have told her sooner, but was afraid of scaring her off. She says he doesn’t scare her at all and that she trusts him. They then hang up and get ready for the date. He takes her to his job, The Downtown Grocer, which is a completely fictitious full service, but very corrupt and shady grocery store located in either the Central Business District or The French Quarter. They walk in holding hands but, the boss commands them to stop. He then picks up his check, cashes it then they leave and head to a place based on The River Walk. The eating and shopping venues on what is an allegory to The River Walk are completely fictitious and unnamed, but he takes her to a coffee and doughnut shop for breakfast, then a fish and chip shop for lunch. She confesses that she shouldn’t eat so much rich food, because of her weight problem, but he tells her that he would love her no matter what size she is. At one point he buys her a Casio Baby G Wristwatch from a gift shop and then they take a selfie together with a cruise ship in the background. They walk up and down the River Walk until the sun sets, then he takes her home…

The following Sunday, which I wrote in May of 2015 and rewrote in October of 2017 My main character gets a text from his girlfriend and she asks to come over to his house. He agrees, goes to Old Metairie then takes her to his home in Mid City. Originally, I thought of the area between Metairie and Old Jefferson, but I find Mid City fits better. He tells her that it isn’t the best, but she doesn’t seem to mind. He reads to her for a little while, then hears her stomach growling. He asks her if she is hungry, to which she replies “Yes.” She then confesses to him that her mom binge ate all the food in her parents’ house. So, he looks in his cabinet and finds a can of Always Save Pork ‘N’ Beans. He warms them up and she scarfs them down. He also brews a coffee/chicory blend for her and they eat rice pudding for dessert. They then turn on the television and catch Breaking Dawn Parts 1 and 2 on a local [fictitious] station’s sub-channel. They wrap up in a blanket and watch the two movies, then afterward he takes her home…

On The Winter Solstice, and I initially wrote this in July of 2014 we find my male character sitting on break at work and having a miserable day. While on break, my male character is telling the store’s janitor about his girlfriend when a female coworker, the deli cook picks a fight with my male character, calls his girlfriend a slut and eventually threatens physical harm to him. Things go from bad to worse when my male character waits on a gentleman, who is trying to locate some remoulade sauce, but then gets written up for talking too much with him. The gentleman later has a much more prominent role in the series. The piece concludes with the janitor offering to do my male character’s fronting and blocking so he can make extra money. My male character goes spend time with his girlfriend at the end of the night…

Later that evening my male character picks up his girlfriend from Old Metairie and drives her to his house. He prepares a dinner of instant oatmeal for them and they converse about what went on earlier in the day. My male character tells of the deli cook threatening him and his boss wrongfully disciplining him. My female character tells how her pill addict mother almost became physically violent with her. Both then have synchronous thoughts of living together as soon as my female character turns eighteen. The piece concludes with them going to sleep in separate bedrooms and dreaming synchronous dreams…

The Christmas Eve pieces was initially written in August of 2014 and we find my male character clocking out of his job and heading to Old Metairie to pick up his girlfriend. They then go to his home and he turns the late local news on. He learns about the whole world preparing for global conflict. My female character tells him to turn off the television, to which he does. He then asks her what would she like to do. She says there is something she definitely wants to do but thinks it’s illegal, be intimate with him. He tells her he will as soon as she turns eighteen. She reminds him that it’s not for another six weeks and a lot could happen, up to and including him being drafted off to war and killed. He confesses to her that he too is a virgin, to which she wants him more. Eventually she convinces him to seal their relationship forever. The piece concludes with them going to bed together, making love and then in the morning he prepares her breakfast…

On Christmas Day, and written initially in June of 2015, my female character is browsing the Internet on her smartphone while her boyfriend is preparing her breakfast. They eat together, then get ready and leave so he can meet her parents. While riding there, she announces to him that she is legal in their state, because the age of consent is seventeen. She is then worried that he’ll leave her now, but he reassures her that nothing in creation could make him want to leave her. She asks “what if you got me pregnant?” He tells her that he would do the honorable thing-marry her. Then her dad calls, wanting to know her whereabouts. She explains that she is on her way and that she is with someone special. They drive to Old Metairie in the freezing rain. Finally they arrive and her dad greets them. It turns out that her dad was the gentleman that was looking for remoulade sauce days before. He offers my male character a better job on the condition that he will be committed to my female character and her only. He tells of his love for her and learns that her weight is due to an under active thyroid gland. My female character’s dad states that my male character better not break his daughter’s heart or he knows people who can tar and feather him. Then he offers them Christmas Dinner, Asian takeout.  I promise you, the girl’s family is not Jewish but they definitely are secular…

The pilot piece was written on June 30, 2014 and takes place on January 11, entails my male character clocking out of his job feeling depressed because he always dreamed that he would have done much more with his life at age 22. He states how life would be much better if only he could get his foot in the door as a writer, but there is someone special who enjoys his work. He then drives to Old Metairie and picks up his girlfriend. He takes her to his home in Mid City. He reads his stories to her and soon they go to bed and become intimate. She asks to stay the night to which he says if it were up to him, she’d stay every night. She answers that she will when she turns eighteen. The piece concludes with my male character stating his life isn’t as depressing as he sometimes believes…

On the evening of February 3, and this was written in the Autumn of 2014, my male character is leaving his job and headed to Old Metairie to pick up his girlfriend to move in with him as she’ll be turning eighteen on the following day. They arrive at his house and settle in. He briefly turns on the news and learns that there is a nationwide high level threat of a terrorist attack. My female character makes him turn the television off. They then order Asian takeout for her birthday dinner, then go to sleep together from the sedating effects of the food. They are woken up to the whistle of a freight train. My female character sees that it is a minute after midnight and exclaims that she is legal now. Then they hear the train derailing. There are several explosions and then the power goes out. A little while later, the cops knock on their door and order them to evacuate…

In the early morning hours of February 4, and this piece was written some time early in 2015, they get in the car with just a few things and decide to head to the countryside (which is actually based on the Deltas of Northeast Louisiana.) They stop at a diner in the middle of nowhere (situated either along US 71 southeast of Alexandria, Louisiana or along US 165 northeast of Alexandria where they are generously given free coffee and food, because the owners sympathize with them and their situation. Afterwards they continue on until arriving at my male character’s parent’s soybean farm, the locations is based on somewhere between Monroe and Ferriday, Louisiana.They are greeted by my male character’s mother who insists that they sleep separately, this was initially written in November of 2015, by the way. They both protest and my male character’s dad wakes up and comes into the kitchen. They explain the whole situation to them and he tells his wife not to be so hard on him and that he though he would be forever lonely because of his condition. My female character wants to know what condition and the dad explains to her that her boyfriend is mildly autistic, but very high functioning. My male character says he didn’t want to tell before her because he was afraid she would leave him. She hugs him and says she would never leave him especially for something like that. She then reminds him of her weight and he says how he loves to hold her at night. The mother gets even angrier. The dad convinces her to let them share the bed, to which which takes two shots of whiskey, then reluctantly agrees…

The next piece was written in late 2015 or early 2016 and involves my couple waking up in my male character’s childhood bedroom. It is biting cold, so he checks the thermostat to realize that the furnace is out of oil. The bulb in his rechargeable flashlight burns out so, he goes back to bed and keeps warm with his girlfriend, until the hunger pangs kick in. They walk to the kitchen where breakfast is being served. The mother tells him to go to the hardware store and buy more oil. Immediately they leave for the hardware store. Upon arrival they wait in line for a few minutes, then they are served by a classmate of my male character. He sells them oil which he charges to his parents’ account. He then pays cash for five new rechargeable flashlight bulbs. His classmate attempts to sell him a high powered LED Mini Maglite penlight, but my main character doesn’t have enough cash. The former classmate suggest to charge it to his parents’ revolving account, but my main character states how they’d be livid if he did that. My female character then uses her debit card and purchases the penlight for him. She then tells him how she’s been keeping track of his debt to her and how she still expects him to pay her back all night long. Several people point and whisper. After all items are purchased, my two characters leave the store and head back to the farm. While driving there, my main character’s mother calls him and demands to know why he and his girlfriend were acting lewd in the store. He asks ‘what do you mean?’ His mother goes on to say that several people called and stated how the girlfriend bought him a flashlight and expects to be paid back all night long. She then rants and raves about how the terrorist attack was God’s punishment to all the wicked city dwellers, then to come home with the oil, because it is freezing in the house. The piece concludes with my male character telling my female character, that he isn’t angry with her, but she needs to watch how she acts while in public areas of a small town because of the busybody type nature of rural people…

They walk into the farmhouse and hand the mother her heating oil, then go to the bedroom. My main character installs a new bulb in his rechargeable flashlight, then opens up the packaging to the Mini Maglite LED his girlfriend bought him. After installing the batteries and turning it on, they are both amazed by the brightness. My male character thanks his girlfriend and says that he still plans to pay her back. At that point the mother walks in and demands to know how long have they been screwing out of wedlock. She forces them to answer her or find another place to stay until the evacuation order is lifted. His girlfriend breaks down and answers, ‘Since this past Christmas Eve. I had fallen so much in love with him and I’m still in love with him, but we had just learned on the news that a world war was about to break out. I was so afraid that he would be drafted and killed in combat without us fully knowing each other. I just wanted to seal my love for him.’ My male character says, ‘You don’t have to explain to her or feel guilty about it.’ The mother goes on to tell him that he is going to have a lot to answer for because of the way he charmed her.

The girlfriend then says, ‘He didn’t charm me at all. Yes, he does write those love stories and I find it very attractive, but I wanted him before I knew he wrote such beautiful things. I just thought he was so cute, so I started talking to him. At first, he was hesitant because of our age difference, but eventually, he fully accepted me. No one else wanted me because of my glandular problem but he loves me in spite of it, just like I love him in spite of his Autism. Any other time I tried to talk to someone of the opposite sex, they would make cow and pig noises, because of my weight. I’ve been dealing with that ever since I was eleven or twelve. When I told your son he was cute, I then asked him if he thought I was cute also or was I too fat and his response was that I was beautiful and not to let anyone else tell me otherwise. If he would have rejected me, I very well might have ended my life. He didn’t reject me though. In fact, he treats me better than I ever dared to dream. No one else was ever so kind to me, so I couldn’t help falling in love with him.’ My male character further explains, ‘Remember how at one point I had written some stories and all the girls were impressed but their boyfriends were jealous, so they began to spread false rumors about me? I was just reminded of that today in the hardware store. It ruined my reputation hence another reason why I got out of this one horse town as soon as I was able. I’m immensely glad I moved to the city too because I met her and she brings so much joy to my life. All of the suffering I endured prior to meeting her was worth it.’ The mother then interjects, ‘You’re lucky those boys didn’t beat you up. Maybe they should have because then you would have learned not to write such sinful literature. All those stories do is cause their readers to have unrealistic expectations of their partners.’ The girlfriend backs him up saying, ‘He reads those stories to me all the time and I don’t have any unrealistic expectations of him, in fact, they usually make me want to love him more. My dad is going to help him get published hopefully soon and he will never have to work at his grocery job again. He is so miserable there, but he keeps the job so he can take care of me.’ The mother goes on to say that work is meant to be miserable because we are sinners in a fallen world. She then says that they will both do chores to burn off all of that sinful energy and if they are going to live like a married couple then they will have the responsibilities of one. She tells my main character to help his daddy in the fields and that the girlfriend will help her cook and clean. my male character assists his dad with changing the fluids in the tractor, then he organizes the whole barn. His dad says how he had been praying that my main character find someone to love him. My main character soberly tells his dad that everyone in town is going to tell him about the fornication going on. The dad says that they need to get married, then and that she is a keeper. They continue talking and my main character says to his dad how he noticed that the Autism never bothered him. His dad replied he produced him late in life but always wanted children and that he appreciated the encyclopedic knowledge and organizational skills his son has. They continue working together until the barn is tidy, then walk to the farmhouse where supper is on the table. As they are sitting down to eat, they get a text saying the evacuation order is lifted. Then the assistant store director calls and orders my male character to get back to the store PDQ. He explains that he is out of town. His boss tells him that he has twenty-four hours to get back or he will be terminated. The piece concludes with them leaving…

I wrote the transition piece at some point in 2020 and it takes place in Mid May and entails my main character and his girlfriend waking up to lightning and thunder in addition to his G-Shock. A line of severe thunderstorms is passing through their city. My main character’s girlfriend prepares him breakfast then they share a highly affectionate good bye as he drives to work. He is then assigned the aisle with boxed gelatin. The storms get worse and the power is knocked out. My main character now has the job of escorting customers throughout the store. He uses the flashlight that his girlfriend bought him at the hardware store. On a few occasions, he exchanges text messages with his girlfriend while in the bathroom and she tells him that she has some very good news for him, but wants to see the look on his face when she delivers it to him. The cook demands to use his flashlight to repair some appliances in the deli, but he refuses to let her. An argument ensues and they are both written up, this being the second strike against him. The assistant store director tells the cook to just charge a flashlight from the housewares section to the deli’s account. The day drags on but finally my main character is finished. He drives home, then is greeted by his girlfriend. She tells him of how several of her dad’s co executives are impressed by his writing and that they want to make him a published author. My main character is overjoyed. She asked him what he wants to do, to which how replies that he’s tired. So they go to sleep in each others’ arms…

The final piece begins with my main character explaining how he is no longer a grocer, but now a writer. He further explains how with the surplus money he fixed up his house, bought a new vehicle, a Dodge Ram and bought an engagement ring for his girlfriend. He says how he is on his way to her parents house to pick her up and propose to her. He rings the doorbell and and she answers. He tells her that he has a surprise for her and it is in the park. Her dad gives him a wink and a thumbs up. He’s the one who had him successfully published and in return he asked for commitment to his daughter only. He helps her into the truck and then they ride to the park, conversing, The girlfriend says, ‘I hope all this money and success won’t corrupt you.’ ‘Well, to make sure it doesn’t I’ll need you by my side forever, to keep me in check.’ ‘A lot of girls and women are going to want you.’ ‘But I don’t want any of them; I just want you. You wanted me, even at my lowest, so now you’ll have me at my highest. You’re the only one who ever put up with my condition and no amount of money or success will make it go away.’ ‘And you’re the only one who loved me despite my weight, which is basically impossible to lose.’ ‘Baby, I love to put my arms around you and hold on to you. I think your weight makes you sexy. However, I want you to have the body you want and know that I am in love with your soul and I’ll want you no matter how thin or heavy you become.’ ‘Oh, I love you so much!’ ‘I love you too, baby!’ They continue to ride in a blissful silence. Upon arriving at the park, they go to the bench where they first met, my male character’s idea. They snuggle on the bench for just a bit, but then he pulls out a ring and tells her “This is for you.” ‘What is this?’ She asks with a bright smile. ‘It’s an engagement ring. Marry me, baby! I’ve been wanting to give you one of these for a long time, but could never afford one until now. Please, be my one and only, both now and forever!’ The girlfriend replies with ecstasy, ‘Yes. Of course, I’ll marry you! I’m so fat, I cannot even drive, but you still want me. You’ve treated me better than in my wildest dreams and you’ve always shown me love and affection when every other guy I was interested in so cruelly rejected me.’ ‘You’ve just made me the happiest man on the planet!’ He tells her with a kiss. Suddenly the deli cook from his God awful grocer’s job shows up in the park, buying snacks for all of her children. My main character stands up on my the bench and shouts at the top of his lungs, ‘I just proposed to the girl of my dreams and she said YES!’ Everyone in the park starts clapping and cheering with the exception of the cook and her children. The cook begins to shout, ‘But he’s retarded and she’s fat. He quit his job and is on disability now, so they are going to have a bunch of fat, retarded children and all of you are going to have to pay taxes to support them.’ My male character replies, ‘Actually, I just got a job as a romantic novelist. That probably means nothing to you though, because somehow you seem like someone who hates reading.’ ‘Shut your mouth little boy!’ The cook says angrily. My male character is now fed up and says, ‘I don’t have to and furthermore if you don’t leave us alone and go back to feeding all of your illegitimate children, I’m going to call the police.’ The cook then pulls a revolver from her purse. She shoots my main character then aims for the girlfriend but several bystanders wrestle the gun from her. My male character bleeds out and the girlfriend suffers a massive heart attack, concluding the series…

That’s all there is, for now at least…I hope that you, the reader, can recognize the originality and unique qualities of these stories.  All in all, thank you for reading.

Back to “Grocer and Writer”

A Synopsis of “The Textfile”

The story begins with eighteen-year-old Anna Ryan riding home from school on her bicycle. The church she attends forbids its members from driving mechanized vehicles or getting a driver’s license, watching or owning a television set, or using cell phones. She is supposed to go home and get ready for youth service, but instead, stops at a local bar and grill and enters. She sits in a booth and looks around the room. Soon, she notices a young man. He is sitting at the bar sipping on bottles of Budweiser and eating peanuts.

Anna is attracted to him though she can only see him from behind.

To get his attention, she pretends to sneeze.

The young man looks at her and says, ‘God bless you.’

Anna replies, ‘Aww thanks.’

He begins to sip his beer again but then does a double-take. He’s very much attracted to her and begins to stare. She smiles at him and he blushes then looks away.

Anna pretends to sneeze again and the young man says, ‘God save you!

Anna replies ‘Thanks. It must be all the dust from these peanut shells that’s stirring up my allergies.’

He tells her that she has a cute sneeze and then asks to come and sit with her.

She accepts.

The young man remarks that he’d never seen her in this place before and that he comes here every afternoon to kill a few beers.

Anna confesses that it’s her first time there and he says how he hopes it’s not her last. He then tells her his name: Grayson Thomas.

Anna introduces herself as well, to which Grayson said how he didn’t know there were any Ryans in the town of Melody.

Anna explains that her family keeps to themselves and only associates with those at her church, which is a fragmented, mixed-race church with doctrine similar to the UPCI.

With slight irritation, Grayson remarks, ‘Oh, jee whiz, I’ve heard all about them. Your parents would probably beat the hell out of you and press charges on me if they knew we were talking right now.’

Anna explains that they would indeed beat her, but they cannot press charges on him because he’s a legal adult.

Grayson then wants to know what she is doing later that evening. Anna explains that she has youth service. Grayson tries to talk her into hanging out with him instead.

Anna says if her parents would find out they would be livid and beat the daylights out of her.

Grayson then asks her a very piercing question, “Are you happy? Do your parents really make you happy? Does that insane church make you happy?”

There’s a silence, but then Anna replies, ‘No-I am not happy at all. I am miserable. My parents only allow me to go to church and school. They beat me sometimes for a yes or a no. People at school make fun of me because of the way the church forces me to dress.’

Grayson then asks her, ‘Do you think I could make you happy? I definitely think you could make me happy, in my twenty-two years on this earth, I’ve never beheld anyone as beautiful as you!’

Anna says that it would be worth a shot.

They continue talking and getting to know each other better. Anna says how she wants to be a writer, and she does actually write but her parents would be furious if they knew exactly what she wrote, they would destroy every copy and then, of course, beat the daylights out of her.

Grayson suggests that she press charges on them.

Anna says that she would go to hell for not honoring her parents.

Grayson explains that the law is not a guide to save yourself, but rather proof that you cannot save yourself.

Anna says how she likes the way he preaches, and never thought she would hear those words coming out of his mouth because he was drinking beer. She also says how she wants to know him better as well.

Grayson explains that he is a mechanic for the Melody City Dockyard and works the 6 AM to 2 PM weekday shift. He also says how he has a cabin on his mother’s property, where he stays. He finally says that he’s been wanting someone for a long time.

Anna said she would gladly be that someone but she just has to get away from her parents.

Grayson holds Anna’s hands and says, ‘You just let me know if you need any help with that.’

His G-Shock then beeps indicating Four PM.

Anna says how she has to get ready for youth service.

Grayson convinces her to spend time with him instead.

Anna agrees and says she’ll meet him back at the bar and grill around Seven PM.

Grayson drinks several glasses of Wild Cherry Pepsi to help sober him up.

He pulls out his smartphone and searches for the church Anna attends. He finds their web page and learns the doctrines of how they are forbidden from driving, watching television, or owning a cell phone. He also read how church members were forbidden to associate with non-church members.

Anna arrives home and is sternly reminded of youth service, by her parents Sean and Janice Ryan.

After an exchange of words, she goes bathe and imagines the night she will share with Grayson.

Her mother bangs on the bathroom door and tells her that God can see everything she does, especially behind closed doors.

She then got dressed and mounted her bicycle and pretended to go to youth service. Her dad squeezed her arm and said for her not to embarrass him at the service.

She drives secretly back to the bar and grill, runs up into Grayson’s arms, wrapping her legs around him.

Grayson pays off his tab, then they leave the bar. Anna puts her bicycle in the bed of his truck then they ride to his cabin. Grayson lets Anna drive his truck in the fields on his mother’s property as the sun goes down.

He then escorts her out of his truck by the light of his Pelican 1920 penlight.

They then walk into his cabin and dance in the kitchen to music on Pandora for an hour or so.

Afterward, they go on his balcony and Grayson says how he comes here to drink beer or whiskey and contemplate life.

Anna says how she could be inspired to write all kinds of things because it’s so beautiful.

Grayson says how ‘it’s nowhere near as beautiful as you, Anna!’

They then share a kiss and begin to pet each other when Grayson’s G-Shock beeps again, indicating Ten O’Clock.

Anna says how she has to get back home before her parents become livid.

Grayson writes down his house and cell numbers on a piece of paper and says how he knows all about her church and how they forbid cell phones, but to call him whenever she can.

Anna hides the paper in her brassiere, and says, with a distressed giggle, ‘It’s close to my heart, just like where I want you to be.’

Grayson then drives Anna to her parents’ trailer, all too quickly arriving.

Anna says, ‘I know you want to get the door for me and let me out, but it’s not safe here if you’re an outsider.’

Grayson replies, ‘I understand. May I at least give you a good night kiss?’

Passionately, Anna tells him, ‘Of course, Grayson! Just so you know, I’ll take that kiss to bed with me!’

Their lips meet one final time, then Anna takes her bicycle out of the truck bed and goes inside.

Grayson drives back to his cabin, drinks a few shots of Crown Royal put his phone on to charge, then goes to bed.

Anna walks into her parents’ trailer and her dad, with a belt in hand, confronts her about not going to youth service. He tells her the pastor, Brother Darryl, called him and said she didn’t attend.

At first, Anna tries to keep silent, but her dad strikes her with his belt several times.

She then says how she’s eighteen now and it’s none of his business, to which he beats her even more.

Her mother comes out of the bedroom, smacks her across the face, then says, ‘It is our business, the church’s business, and most importantly God’s business and always will be. Now answer us!’

Anna still keeps silent.

Her mother takes a claw hammer from the kitchen drawer and threatens to knock Anna’s teeth out with it.

Anna breaks down and confesses about how she spent the evening with a young man and how’s he’s so much better than the young men at her church. She goes on to say that while they were indeed alone together, he never took advantage of her and she does have feelings for him.

Her mother flings the hammer at her toes, then says how her feelings are sinful energies, brought on by evil forces.

Anna boldly states, ‘No, they feel very right and natural. You and dad have no affection in your relationship, whatsoever. You never kiss, you never touch, you never speak any romantic words to each other. I don’t want to be subjected to such a cold marriage like that and if I marry one of the men at church, that’s exactly what will happen to me.’

Her dad slams her to the ground and says, “You have invited so much sin into your life, you’re driving and dancing, which is absolutely forbidden, and now you’re attacking your me and your mother’s marriage just because you never see us behaving lewdly in front anyone! This is all because you are very rebellious and always have been. I tell you, it is going to stop right now if you know what is good for you!”

He then tells her to go to bed because she has school.

The next morning, Grayson gets up and prepares for work.

Anna too gets ready for school, then rides her bicycle there arriving early.

At around seven-thirty in the morning, Anna goes to the student office and asks Mrs. Barabara McGregor if she could use the phone.

Mrs. Barabara agrees and Anna calls Grayson’s cell number.

Grayson takes a coffee break to talk with her.

Anna tells all that her parents did her last night and Grayson suggests once again that she press charges.

Anna then says God would punish her if she did.

Grayson says how parents aren’t supposed to provoke their children to wrath and they obviously do, because they are trying to keep her from being happy. Grayson then asks if he even makes her happy.

Anna says that he definitely does.

Grayson says that she makes him happy too and that he was lonely before her and uses alcohol to temper the sting of loneliness.

They continue to talk and flirt on the phone until Grayson’s coffee break comes to an end and other students need to use the phone.

Anna goes to a secluded area on the school campus, then fantasizes about Grayson, lapsing into a trance until the bell rings.

Meanwhile, Grayson is assigned two forklifts to repair, with a little assistance from the foreman, Mr. Jed McGregor. He works until Noon, then goes to eat lunch.

At lunch his mom, Kathy Thomas calls him over Skype wondering why he didn’t come to dinner the previous night. Grayson tells her about Anna, then explains her background. Kathy warns him about the people of Anna’s church, Grayson pulls out his Snap-On pocket knife and says, “Wait, let them try something.” Kathy warns that he would go to pen. Grayson states that Anna is worth it. Kathy says she wants to meet Anna, then goes back to work. Grayson finishes his lunch, then clocks back in.

Jed McGregor has him do a tune-up on the dockside truck as the last assignment of the day and comments how he notices Grayson is in a better mood than usual. Grayson tells him too about Anna and the whole situation. Jed says how he and his wife will pray for them. Jed McGregor and Barbara McGregor are married if you haven’t guessed that already.

Grayson does the work on the dockside truck and soon enough has it running. He drives it to the docks and tells the dock foreman how it is fixed.

Grayson then clocks out and heads home suppressing the urge to drink alcohol, since Anna might call him.

Anna is sitting in English, the last class of the day, studying the works of George Gordon Byron. She thinks of how her parents would be furious if they knew about these works, but also thinks of the previous night on the balcony with Grayson. The teacher goes on to talk about Byron’s scandalous life and early death. Anna begins to feel nervous wondering if she will die for what she is told is rebellion. However, she knows her feelings for Grayson are valid and genuine.

Finally, the dismissal bell blares and Anna goes down to the office to call Grayson. Anna asks him to pick her up from school, to which he agrees.

Mrs. Barbara asks Anna if she is serious about whomever she is talking to on the phone. Anna says how she hopes it is. Mrs. Barbara asks, “What’s his name?” Anna says “Grayson Thomas.”

Mrs. Barbara goes on to say how he works under her husband and she’s heard many good things about him except how he’s lonely and not to break his heart. Anna says how she’d never dream about it. Mrs. Barbara asks if Anna is eighteen yet. Anna says she is. Mrs. Barbara goes on to say how that’s good because if she wasn’t Grayson would be in a world of trouble [with the law.] Anna says she’s more worried about what her church members would do. Mrs. Barbara says she and her husband will pray for her and to go wait outside for him.

Anna goes out to the bicycle rack just as Grayson is pulling up in his truck. He parks his truck then gets out and they kiss with passion until the SRO makes them stop. Anna unlocks her bicycle [and puts it in the truck bed], then Grayson opens the door for her and she gets in. Grayson then gets in on the driver’s side and they leave.

As they are driving, Grayson talks Anna into secretly getting a smartphone so they can keep in touch. At first, Anna is reluctant but then realizes he is showing dedication to her and it means a lot to her.

With that, they drive to the Best Buy Mobile store in the mall…

Grayson ends up purchasing Anna a mid-grade Samsung smartphone that is on clearance. Afterward, they eat at a corn dog restaurant, use the bathroom, then Grayson partially takes Anna home, she rides her bicycle the rest of the way.

Anna’s parents confront her about being late, to which she fabricates a partially true alibi that she went to use the bathroom at the mall.

Her parents lecture her about malls being sinful, worldly places but believe her otherwise.

She then goes into her bedroom pretending to study. She barricades the door with several heavy objects, then hides in her closet whilst texting Grayson.

They fall deeper and for each other and end up exchanging those three words via text message.

Anna’s dad barges in but she quickly hides the phone in her underwear and pretends to be sleeping in her closet.

Her dad angrily yells at her and they begin arguing to which he ultimately punches her in the head, knocking her unconscious.

Grayson blows up her inbox, thinking she ghosted him, then drinks a fifth of Crown and passes out in his bed.

Friday morning, Anna comes to, uses the bathroom, and reads all of Grayson’s text messages.

She replies to him, frantically explaining all that happened.

Grayson is hungover, but hears his watch alarm and then sees Anna’s message.

He says how he is glad she still wants him, but her life is in danger and she should come live with him.

Anna agrees.

Grayson explains how he drank until he passed out when he thought she ghosted him, but he will take a personal day to sober up and then prepare his house for her. He promises her that there is no more alcohol in his cabin and that he will quit drinking at least until this situation is resolved.

They further discuss their plans via text.

Grayson calls his boss to take a personal day, then Anna’s mom orders her out of the bathroom.

She packs all of her valuables, her flash drives, and composition books, some hygiene products, and a few changes of clothes in addition to her new phone, then heads to school.

Before the morning bell rings, Anna talks to Grayson on her phone from the girl’s restroom. They further discuss their plans.

Grayson picks Anna up from school at the end of the day.

He takes her to his house and minutes later his mother shows up, stating that she is having issues with leaking oil in her car.

Grayson introduces them to each other, then fixes his mother’s car, the problem was that the oil filter was on loosely.

Afterward, Grayson washes up, then takes Anna out for shopping and dinner.

Whilst shopping for clothes, Anna’s corrupt and overbearing pastor confronts her in the mall.

Grayson stands up to him and he eventually backs down stating how Grayson has won the battle but not the war.

Anna has a panic attack, but Grayson eventually calms her down.

They then go eat out and are waited on by one of Anna’s school friends.

The night turns out very pleasant and they retire to Grayson’s cabin.

That Saturday, Grayson, and Anna decide to hang out in the park and watch boats pass from the bed of his truck.

At some point, a girl from Anna’s class begins to harass them. She makes a sexual advance at Grayson to which he sharply turns her down, then she threatens bodily harm to Anna, to which Grayson retrieves his shotgun from the box in his truck pumps it, points it at her, and scares her away.

They later go to the library, then the grocer to buy the supplies to make dinner, Shepherd’s Pie.

While shopping they see the pastor’s wife in the store purchasing collard greens for the next day’s dinner. Anna gets nervous because the woman carries a gun in her purse and would be crazy enough to shoot Grayson with it. A stocker overhears their conversation and hides them in the warehouse until the pastor’s wife leaves. The stocker is based on another infamous character of mine.

They then go home, prepare dinner, eat, watch movies then fall asleep.

That Sunday, they wake up, then sit outside and watch the sunrise from Grayson’s front porch swing. Afterward, Anna feels the urge to write, then composes a story and reads to Grayson.

Everyone at Anna’s church is angry over her leaving and they form a plan to kidnap her back and harm Grayson for revenge.

After Anna reads to Grayson, his mother calls them over for Sunday Dinner.

Anna ends up helping prepare the dinner and she learns about Grayson’s childhood.

On Monday their plan is carried out. Several longshoremen who attend Anna’s church decide to sabotage the dock crane. Grayson has to go to the top to repair it and one of the longshoremen assists him, but purposely causes him to fall.

Grayson is seriously injured and rushed to the hospital.

Anna is called to the office over threats Grayson made with a gun to a fellow student.

She is suspended from school while the matter is investigated.

Anna tries calling Grayson to pick her up, but his phone goes straight to voicemail.

Her Dad is called. He along with her pastor secure a ride and pick her up from school.

Barbara is watching the whole situation unfold and calls her husband Jed.

Jed and Barbara are talking about these events and realize that foul play is the reason why Grayson fell from the crane. They call the police, who charge the disgruntled longshoreman.

An APB is also put out on the van.

Soon it is located and stopped, Anna’s dad and her pastor are arrested.

Anna is asked to be taken to the hospital, but ironically says she wants to be with her boyfriend. A detective later informs her of all that is going on, then takes a statement from her. She is then taken to the hospital where she meets Grayson’s mother.

They along with the hospital chaplain and an unknown person pray for him around the clock.

For two days Grayson is in a coma, but then he wakes up, with Anna being the first person he sees.

Grayson ends up proposing to her…

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